The Genesis Programme: The ABC Programme for Dundalk & Drogheda

The Genesis Programme is a consortium of over fifty Partner Organisations that is delivering the Incredible Years® suite of programmes and other evidence-informed interventions to children, families and communities in Dundalk and Drogheda in County Louth as part of the Area Based Childhood (ABC) Programme.

The ABC Programme is a cross-departmental initiative and is co-funded by the Irish Government through the Department of Children & Youth Affairs and the Atlantic Philanthropies. It is jointly managed by the Centre for Effective Services (CES) and Pobal.

The ABC Programme targets investment in evidence-informed interventions to improve the long-term outcomes for children and families living in areas of disadvantage.

It aims to break “the cycle of child poverty within areas where it is most deeply entrenched and where children are most disadvantaged, through integrated and effective services and interventions” in the following areas: child development, child well-being, parenting and educational disadvantage.

In line with the Government’s commitment to draw on best international practice and existing services to tackle aspects of child poverty, the ABC Programme focuses on the implementation of interventions and approaches that have been found to significantly improve child outcomes in an Irish setting. These interventions and approaches within the target areas should also be integrated with mainstream services such as health and education.

The Partner Organisations of The Genesis Programme are made up of Early Years Settings, Schools, Community Groups, Louth Children’s & Young People’s Services Committee,  Louth County Childcare Committee, Dundalk Institute of Technology, National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS), Educational Disadvantage Centre at St. Patrick’s College, Irish Primary Principals’ Network (IPPN) as well as a range of departments within the Health Service Executive (HSE) and Tusla – the Child & Family Agency.

Louth Leader Partnership is the lead agency.

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Our Vision

The Vision of The Genesis Programme is to measurably improve the well-being and developmental outcomes for children aged pre-birth to 6 years in the targeted areas by implementing the Incredible Years® suite of programmes with fidelity using an agreed area based approach.

The well-being and development outcomes referred to are across the following areas:

  • Child Health and Development
  • Parenting
  • Children’s Learning
  • Integrated Service Delivery
  • Mainstream Delivery

In order to achieve these outcomes the work will focus on the following six key objectives:

  1. That all relevant agencies work collaboratively to agree and implement an area based approach to deliver the Incredible Years® suite of programmes for children aged pre-birth to six years of age
  2. That those delivering the programmes are trained and coached ensuring fidelity and standards are met
  3. That a Parent Forum is developed to act as a consultative body to inform policy and practice
  4. To work collaboratively with Dundalk Institute of Technology to develop modules that support The Genesis Programme Implementation Plan as part of relevant degree courses
  5. To work collaboratively with Partner Organisations to develop an Infant Mental Health Framework for Co. Louth
  6. That the project collaborates with Louth Children’s & Young People’s Services Committee to embed programmes in service delivery across all relevant agencies

 

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The Incredible Years®

The Incredible Years® is a series of interlocking, evidence-based programmes for children, their parents and their teachers, supported by over thirty years of research.

Their goal is to prevent and treat young children’s behavioural problems and promote their social, emotional and academic competence.

The programme was developed at the University of Washington in Seattle by Dr. Carolyn Webster-Stratton.

The programme has been implemented widely within a number of countries including Canada, Denmark, the UK, Finland, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Sweden, the Netherlands, the USA and of course here in Ireland.

Currently there are 8 accredited trainers, 63 mentors and 52 peer coaches providing training and support across these countries.

Whilst each programme has been designed as a stand-alone intervention, taken together, they provide a cohesive and uniform strategy to address and eliminate behavioural difficulties in children.

As outlined earlier The Incredible Years® (IY) Series is a set of interlocking and comprehensive training programmes for parents, teachers and children.

There are a number of parent programmes that target key developmental stages and those being utilised by The Genesis Programme are:

  • IY Parent & Baby Programme (0-12 months)
  • IY Toddler Programme (1-3 years)
  • IY Parent Programme (3-6 years)

There are two child programmes using the Dinosaur School Social, Emotional Skills and Problem Solving Curriculum:

  • Small Group Dinosaur Child Treatment Programme (ages 4-8 years)
  • Classroom Dinosaur Prevention Programme (ages 3-8 years)

Finally, there are two teacher/childcare practitioner programmes:

  • Teacher Classroom Management Programme for teachers of children aged 3-8 years
  • Incredible Beginnings Programme for teachers and childcare practitioners of children aged 1-5 years

The short-term goals of the Incredible Years® programmes are:

  • Improved parent-child interactions, building positive relationships and attachment
  • Improved parental functioning, less harsh and more nurturing parenting, and increased parental social support and problem solving
  • Improved teacher-student relationships, proactive classroom management skills and strengthened teacher-parent partnerships
  • Prevention, reduction and treatment of early onset conduct behaviours and emotional problems
  • Promotion of child social competence, emotional regulation, positive attributions, academic readiness and problem solving

The long-term goal of the Incredible Years® programmes is:

  • Prevention of conduct disorders, academic underachievement, delinquency, violence and drug abuse

Wally and Molly puppets ©Rigadoon

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Our Programmes

Antenatal & Baby

The Genesis Programme, in collaboration with health professionals and community based projects, will deliver the following programmes across a range of Health and Community settings:

  • Preparing for Baby Programme
  • Parent & Baby Programme

Early Years

The Genesis Programme, in collaboration with early childhood educators, will deliver the following programmes across a range of Early Years settings:

  • Incredible Years® Toddler Programme
  • Incredible Years® Classroom Dina Programme (Early Years)
  • Incredible Beginnings Programme for Early Years staff

Schools

The Genesis Programme, in collaboration with the twelve participating schools – their principals, teachers, Home School Community Liaison, School Completion Programmes and community projects – will deliver the following programmes:

  • Incredible Years® Teacher Classroom Management Programme
  • Incredible Years® Classroom Dina Programme
  • Incredible Years® Small Group Dina Programme
  • Incredible Years® Parent Programme

Quality

The Genesis Programme places a strong emphasis on exploring and collaborating with our Partner Organisations to support them to implement these programmes with fidelity so as to achieve the best outcomes for the children, their families and communities.

This is achieved through delivering high quality training, coaching, mentoring and ongoing developmental support to Group Leaders and Partner Organisations.

Evaluation measures and tools built into the programmes to ensure that quality and fidelity are maintained to the highest standards.