Genevieve and her husband Dan founded the Peaceful Parent Institute in New Zealand in 2004, and since that time peaceful parenting has been adopted by parents and professionals around the globe who resonate with this much more respectful and even therapeutic model of parenting.
The peaceful parenting philosophy that is taught by Genevieve, and peaceful parenting mentors trained by Genevieve, equips parents with the tools to transition to a non-punitive connection and attachment based parenting approach. The vision of the Peaceful Parent Institute is to empower parents with the skills and awareness they need to create more harmony, happiness and peace in their families.
It's based on the recognition that to bring about long lasting positive change, parents need to gain a better understanding of what their child needs in their growth and development, which leads to a greater motivation to learn the parenting tools which hold the value of the parent child relationship at the core. Genevieve understands that the necessary change needs to happen at the emotional level, which is why peaceful parenting puts equal focus on helping parents develop the self-awareness and emotional self-regulation skills needed to change. In supporting parents in their learning, growth and change, Genevieve shares her indepth experience and study of the many and varied tools for self-growth, self-healing, mindfulness and meditative practices.
Genevieve is an International speaker, group facilitator, a qualified psychosynthesis counsellor, certified parenting instructor and educator and a writer. She is a contributor of The Natural Parent Magazine (published in New Zealand, but available worldwide) and Kindred magazine. She is on the committee for and is a presenter at the annual Natural Phenomena Nature Education Conference. Over the last twenty years Genevieve has presented hundreds of workshops and courses from evening seminars to five day residential retreats in parenting, relationships, self-healing, meditation and personal development. She shares her in-depth study of many experts in the fields of early childhood development, personal development, attachment and neuroscience.
Genevieve is a Certified Aware Parenting instructor, having trained with Dr. Aletha Solter PhD, psychologist and author of five ground-breaking parenting books. Dr. Solter is the founder of the Aware Parenting Institute, who have over 65 instructors in over 15 countries, Genevieve being the only one in New Zealand. Genevieve is also a Heart to Heart Parenting Facilitator, trained by Robin Grille to teach his Heart to Heart parenting program. Robin Grille, is a psychologist and psychotherapist based in Sydney, Australia and is the author of "Parenting for a Peaceful World" and "Heart to Heart Parenting" (both available here). She is also a Beyond Consequences Instructor, sharing the work of Heather Forbes, psychologist, author and founder of Beyond Consequences Institute, whose books are particularly supportive to parents whose children exhibit extreme behavioural difficulties relating to a trauma history. Genevieve completed the fundamentals, the foundation year and Tier 3 of the Diploma in Psychosynthesis Counselling.
Genevieve brings to her work the culmination of many years of various trainings in the fields of counselling, non-punitive parenting models, emotional healing, personal growth, family systems, mindfulness, meditation, nonviolent communication, energy healing and medicine wheel work. She has worked one on one with clients and couples over the last twenty years, facilitating healing and growth in private practice and facilitating learning and growth through group education and facilitation. Genevieve and Dan both share examples from their personal experience as parents and also share their journey of growth, learning and change as a couple practicing peaceful parenting since becoming parents in 1997.
Dan also brings a wealth of experience in the personal growth field. He has a diploma in psychosocial studies and worked for some years on the team of counsellors in a residential psychotherapy program for adults with borderline personality disorder. He enjoys the dynamics of working with teenagers and has a particular passion also for supporting Dads! Dan facilitates leadership and personal growth camps (read more) for groups of high school teenagers, along with Dean Alpin and Genevieve. Dan has also been very involved in the men's movement and has been part of a team of men who annually facilitate "Pathways to Manhood" for teenage boys with Essentially Men for about 10 years now. Dan and Genevieve's son has also attended three of these 9 day long yearly camps and is also now on the service team.
There is also, behind the scenes, a group of dedicated parents who are endlessly committed to supporting the work of the Peaceful Parent Institute, who help promote the groups and support parents who are new to the model.
Genevieve Simperingham is an Irish woman, living in New Zealand since 2000. Dan is from Auckland, New Zealand. They have been working together since they first met in Dublin in 1995. They lived together in Ireland for six years before moving to New Zealand. From the beginning, they discovered that they had much in common in their interests, passions and ambitions. They both were involved in personal development groups for years before they'd met, so they began to combine their skills and build on the groups that Genevieve was already facilitating, which was a series of about eight weekend residentials per year throughout Ireland and England in the subjects of self-healing, relationships, parenting and many aspects of personal and spiritual development.
"We are passionate about supporting parents and helping them learn how to stay emotionally connected with their children through the inevitable conflicts and differences of wants, needs and opinions that are normal in close relationships. We share with parents that conflicts offer an opportunity for growth, learning and deeper understanding of each other and ourselves as parents. The skills that we teach allow the bond to ever deepen between the parent and their child, as well as between the parents as they work through challenges and enjoy and celebrate each other's unique qualities."
Among Genevieve and Dan's areas of expertise are equipping adults with skills to continually improve and heal their relationship with their self, to continue to evolve their own emotional development, as this relationship with self forms the foundation and blueprint for all other close relationships, including the parent child relationship. They help adults and youth face and recover from arrested emotional and social development relating to early childhood (including recovery from all forms of abuse and trauma). Genevieve also helps mothers resolve trauma relating to pre-natal and birth traumas.
"As parents: We are the proud parents of our 16 year old son and 11 year old daughter. They are both very happy about the work that we do with parents because they know that it helps parents and it helps children and that's all good. Our own children are our biggest teachers. We don't always hit the spot in balancing all the needs within the family, but we're all very committed to listening to and respecting each person's perspective and repairing any misunderstandings or hurts that arise. We, as a family believe in creating plenty of time and space for all the voices and all the emotions. We are very proud to be doing the best we can to end unhealthy cycles of dysfunctional relating that are sadly still more the norm in our society.
"From the outset of becoming parents, our main aim was to always support and guide, rather than repress, our children's emotions and also to keep a strong focus on clean and clear boundaries within our family. We were already immersed in a world of helping adults re-parent themselves in healthier and kinder ways, yet in becoming parents we began to face the most real challenge of all, which is to maintain emotional openness, honesty and integrity within the family as a couple and as parents."
Genevieve shares: "As a result of childhood physical and sexual abuse, I experienced complex trauma at the more extreme end of the spectrum. I was lucky to see how far I was from being at peace with myself and my world at the young age of seventeen and made it my mission to do whatever it took to come to peace with my past and all the negative effects it had on me. I was also lucky to begin practicing meditation and mindfullness from age 19. The journey of healing has been immense, with the help of many wonderful counsellors, therapists, teachers, friends and family. At this point I can bless it all because I have a depth of understanding and compassion to share with those I work with that comes not just from the trainings I've completed, but at least as much from my personal experience of growth, learning, change and healing.
Helping others to heal and learn the communication, conflict resolution and relationship skills that foster a healthy family system is my path and my passion. Because of all I've overcome myself, I have an unwavering belief in the human's capacity to survive, overcome and heal even deeply engraved wounds and addictions. And yet the more that can be resolved within the parent, hence the parent child relationship while our children are still young the better."