The North-East Scottish Moray coast is home to Baby Peep groups in Lossiemouth, Elgin, Buckie, Keith, Dufftown and Forres. Health visitors give a Peep leaflet to all parents during the primary visit, and last year over a hundred families attended. Most of the groups are led by community nursery nurses, who are part of the local health centre team and already have contact with nearly all local families. Peep delivery in the area has extended to become multi-agency, with volunteers, council and third sector staff also having completed Peep practitioner training.
An important element of Peep groups is the opportunity to meet other parents and make new social networks. This is especially so when becoming a parent for the first time and finding that existing friendship groups change, or in an area like Moray with both an RAF and an Army base, where it’s easy for Service families to feel isolated. The families all found that their Peep group helped extend their social networks, for both themselves and their children. By the end of the 8 week course, most parents were also singing and sharing books with their baby every day. They enjoyed recognising how their babies responded: making ‘happy’ squealing and giggling noises, maintaining eye contact and getting visibly excited, and trying to join in with some of the actions. Many parents also joined the library with their baby, as well as attending other groups such as baby massage and baby swimming.
feedback from moray parents
'I've been more self aware of what every activity I do means.'
'Peep gave me confidence of how to entertain her & develop her skills when I felt low and inadequate as a parent. Peep is more organised and focused, constructive towards helping the baby/toddler develop.'
'Seeing how much my children enjoyed and benefited from attending the group made me want to continue to do all these things at home with them, my eldest is now 4 and still enjoys all the Peep activities we do (at home) especially the messy ones!'
'I became quite withdrawn, especially being a first time Mum, I was daunted and anxious; Peep helped to reassure, it was more inclusive than other baby groups.'
'Peep provides reassurance, confidence and lightheartedness. It reminded me not to be anxious about my daughter's development and just play with her and enjoy her'.
'The Peep group is a low cost fun activity that is developmentally focussed and promotes the benefits of early learning'
'Peep taught me about making toys instead of buying fancy things which is better for your child'
'Peep has given me ideas about how to help my child learn through play'
'As health visitors we think that Peep is really good and benefits parent & baby/child. It helps parents see the simple things, and that their time and attention is what matters, rather than expensive toys. It's about going back to basics, going into your kitchen cupboard and using what's there. Peep is good for building bonds, and the time spent with baby is quality time. Peep makes parents more confident, we certainly get fewer phonecalls from Peep parents, and it helps them to do things that they maybe didn't experience in their own childhood.'