Centre Profile

International Congress on Evidence-based Parenting Support Sets Global Call to Action

28 June 2023

The Life Course Centre was proud to sponsor the inaugural International Congress on Evidence-based Parenting Support (I-CEPS), a truly global online event held across four time zones over three days from 6-8 June 2023 that attracted more than 600 delegates from 56 countries.

“The Congress brought people together from all corners of the globe, united to make a difference and make a profound impact at a global level,” said Professor Matthew Sanders, chairperson of host organisation the Parenting and Family Research Alliance (PAFRA) and a Life Course Centre Chief Investigator.

Watch Professor Matthew Sanders’ wrap up

He stressed that “parenting matters” on a global scale because it is the “clean water” of children’s mental health, resilience and well-being. “Of all the potentially modifiable factors influencing human development, none are more important than the quality of parenting children receive,” Professor Sanders said.

I-CEPS was officially opened by the Australian Government’s Minister for Social Services, the Hon. Amanda Rishworth MP,  and was supported by two global ambassadors – Australia’s National Children’s Commissioner, Anne Hollonds, and former first Future Generations Commissioner for Wales, Sophie Howe.

The interactive online program featured a diverse range of keynote presentations, symposia, panels, posters, workshops and masterclasses. The international collaboration is also continuing via post-Congress action circles.

Professor Sanders said I-CEPS sought “to do things differently and “was not a means to an end but a beginning” in harnessing collective global knowledge to promote action, drive change and have a lasting impact on policy and service delivery for the benefit of children, families and communities.

His closing Congress address included a call to action to build strong international alliances of stakeholders and create enabling pathways “to implement properly what is known to work” and advocate for greater government investment. “There has never been a more important time to make a serious commitment to the implementation and scaling of evidence-based parenting support,” Professor Sanders said.

This includes a blend of population-level and targeted approaches that empowers parents worldwide with the tools and skills for their parenting journey and their children’s life course journey. To achieve this requires collective global action to influence policy and improve access to ensure that evidence-based parenting support around the world is normal, desirable, culturally appropriate and free from stigma for the well-being of the next generation.

A key outcome from the I-CEPS  was the Supporting Families pledge to improve access to evidence-based parenting support worldwide.

Registered conference participants can access conference presentations and resources until 18th September 2023 via the virtual event portal.

Alternatively, you can also still register to access the full program of I-CEPS presentations.