Did you know that the Scottish Cot Death Trust offers free safe sleep training to staff in Early Learning and Childcare settings? Martin Courtney, National Education Coordinator for the Trust, describes their education sessions and outlines what support is available.
As part of our strategy the charity provides a Scotland-wide education programme which includes awareness sessions in nurseries, early learning, and other childcare settings. A typical session expands on key ‘safe sleep’ and ‘reduce the risk’ messages. The content is general in order to be beneficial to different audiences who include parents, midwives, health visitors, early learning and childcare staff and students, but delivery is tailored to each specific setting. Charity staff and dedicated volunteers offer sessions face-to-face or via webinar or video conferencing.
Overall, our education work is about raising awareness and providing a platform for learning and the sharing of good practice. Staff working in early learning and childcare settings may not be directly affected at work but it’s beneficial to be both aware of how the charity can support families, and being comfortable having conversations about safe sleep practice.
The Scottish Cot Death Trust has recently launched SafeSleepScotland, a new education resource for parents and professionals. SafeSleepScotland.org offers expansion to the messages outlined on the Trust’s widely circulated Easy-Read leaflet. To help launch this new project, a new awareness video “A Baby’s Guide to Safe Sleep” was created – a poem explaining good safe sleep practice, narrated from baby’s point of view. The purpose of our education work is not to dictate what parents and care givers should and shouldn’t do, but to inform and explain key evidence-based findings and we hope this new video will encourage people to engage with what can be a difficult topic to discuss.
As well as education, the charity has provided support to families affected by a sudden unexpected death of an infant (SUDI) since 1985. During this time, they have also funded over £3,000,000 towards research. Support services offered by the charity include counselling, befriending, and a Next Infant Support Programme (NISP) for families who go on to have children after experiencing such a tragic loss.
For safe sleeping in early learning and childcare settings, the following should be considered:
- Where and on what do infants sleep?
- Sleep supervision during nap time
- Safe sleep spaces – firm, flat, uncluttered.
- Temperature of sleep room
For further information on the Scottish Cot Death Trust’s education services, or if you would like to discuss our support, research, or fundraising in more detail, please email email@example.com
or visit www.scottishcotdeathtrust.org
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