Parent Factory Workers Training with CCR CSR in China
We have long-standing relationships with our factories in China and are continuously working with our ethical team on the ground to ensure that we are building better conditions for workers and taking responsibility for our everyday decisions and their impact within the supply chain. We do this by visiting each factory multiple times throughout the year and providing and supporting training sessions on issues that make a genuine difference.
A challenge commonly faced by factory workers in China is the amount of time they spend with their children; more often than not, they will work a long way from home and only return home once or twice a year, which presents challenges when it comes to relationship building and supporting their children. Earlier in 2019, our Senior Ethical trade Manager, Robin Zhang, and Assistant Ethical Trade Manager, Adams Hu, worked with CCR CSR, a pioneer in the field of children’s rights in China, to successfully conduct two half-day migrant parent worker training sessions for 100 factory workers.
All training participants were parents, and the majority had left their child behind in the care of other family members for work. The focus of the training was to teach migrant workers how to care for their children and maintain communication from a distance. The five modules gave them the tools to communicate with their child more effectively, while also building their confidence and capacity to be a supportive parent.
Training Agenda and modules
The five modules gave workers the tools to communicate with their child more effectively, whilst also building their confidence and capacity to be a supportive parent. The module topics included the emotional stress of leaving your hometown for work, understanding your child’s needs and expectations, protecting your child and effective remote communication.
Some parent workers said they kept in touch with their children frequently through phone calls and video calls, but still found it difficult to understand and support their child from so far away. The training also included a series of activities, including case studies, videos, group discussion and role play, to help participants address their concerns and provide the tools for more effective remote communication.
During the training, the workers were really engaged and focused, completing each training task with great interest. Participants cherished the learning opportunity and actively interacted with the trainer, asking many questions about the needs of children at different ages and proactively approached the trainer for further discussion during the break.
Many workers also struggled with demonstrating the emotional and caring side of their relationship with their child and the trainer reminded them that love can be demonstrated through very simple, yet impactful ways, such as by saying the words “I love you”, hugging or kissing them or even just smiling more at them.
Feedback from participants
To evaluate the effectiveness of the session, we carried out a survey before and after the training. The results showed how the training significantly relieved parent workers’ guilt for leaving their child behind and improved their level of awareness and knowledge about maintaining a good parent-child relationship.
Before the training, 95% of the parent workers felt guilty about the separation from their children. After the training, this proportion decreased by 56%. This shows that parents are able to think about the separation in more positive terms if they feel more confident about their ability to continue to have a say in their children’s lives.
Was the training successful?
Although a half-day training cannot instantly transform a person into a parenting expert, it was an extremely valuable and useful tool for delivering the knowledge and skills that all parents need in order to start building closer relationships with their children.
The training was a good opportunity for the factory to understand the situation and needs of many of their workers, and to consider more practical actions to support parents, such as setting up Child-Friendly Spaces at the factory where children can visit their parents during Summer holidays.
Quotes from Training Participants
“I didn’t really understand my child’s needs and mood before. After taking part in the training, I’ve learned how to talk to my child properly and understand my child’s needs. From now on I’ll interact with my child more.”
“I usually pay too little attention to my children and don’t know enough about them. I will spend more time communicating with them and respecting their thoughts.”
“I have never considered letting children make decisions by themselves, but I will try to do so after this parenting training.”
“We feel this kind of training is necessary, and its effect may not be obvious immediately, but in the future, it will slowly change the family in a long way.