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19 Mar 2020 | 16:16 | Jan Gnapp

Local Baby Charity Offers Parents Free Counselling Sessions On-Line

With schools and nurseries shutting down, never will families be more in need of therapeutic support, and DorPIP – the Dorset charity which helps nurture family bonds - is determined to carry on providing it. From next Monday, the charity is offering free thirty-minute video or telephone support sessions to help combat the effects of increasing social isolation. 

“Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures,” says Viv Allen, who founded DorPIP in 2017. “At this point I’m unsure of how long we’ll be able to keep the service free; but we felt as a charity that we had to offer something. In light of the Government’s advice to keep a social distance - and in some cases to self-isolate - it is vital to ensure that parents-to-be and those with young children feel as fully supported as possible. It’s a known fact that socialising as a parent with new-borns and young infants is beneficial to the health and wellbeing of the whole family.  

“Going out, enjoying fresh air, meeting with others and sharing experiences all help to encourage good mental health and sustain joyful feelings. However, this life-line is now severely restricted as more and more groups and public places close. We have been delighted to see how communities are reaching out to support each other.  We can add to this with the offer of an on-line therapy sessions, so that parents have a safe, confidential space to talk about their concerns.”

The charity, which has a number of qualified and expert parent-infant counsellors available, is urging fathers and mothers, who are currently pregnant, or with children under the age of two, to reach out to them for support. As Viv explains, “If you feel you need a space to safely express your thoughts and feelings, especially as pressure and stress builds within the family home during this uncertain period, please get in touch.”

DorPIP (the Dorset Parent Infant Partnership) was established with the aim of supporting families across the county. The charity was born out of Viv’s realisation that there was no one point of contact for families who are struggling with issues like post-natal depression, increasing strain between parents or simply needing someone with whom they can safely express their concerns. Through offering specialised parent infant counselling, the charity aims to help parents form secure and nurturing relationships with their infants. To find out more about the free sessions, visit

DorPIP receive no statutory funding and rely solely on charitable grants and donations. If you would like more information on how to help support the charity, please also visit their website. 

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FOR EDITORS: For more info contact Viv Allen: email: [email protected]; mobile: 07813 989707