The programme for parents

Lifestart has 30 years’ experience in helping people develop as parents. Our work focuses on the building blocks of child development: parent/child attachment, bonding and interaction, language development, play and most of all, love. Find out here what our parents think of our work.

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The Growing Child


The Growing Child gives an easy and enjoyable step-by-step guide to how children develop

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The Growing Child is available as a franchise to organisations supporting children and their families

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Out of the range of good quality parenting programmes available, the Lifestart programme is highly cost effective and for a structured evidence-based programme, is sufficiently flexible at the point of delivery to allow for adaptation in response to need

Prof. E. Melhuish (2015)

My son Braidan began on the Lifestart programme when he was 6 months old. Braidan turned 3 on 24 November 2012 and I cannot put into words just how valuable the programme has been to his overall development.

Lifestart has been a priceless asset to our family life, I have received the support every 1st time mum needs to help my child develop to the best of his ability and already at 3 years old his advanced skills are shining through.

Karen - Mum to Braidan age 3

I just want commend you and the Lifestart Programme as after attending a Nursery meeting at School, discussing curriculum, child development and what types of ‘play’ are encouraged, the topics covered in the programme and the advice you give are so relevant and on point. Thank you.


Thank you Lifestart Programme Team for your knowledge, support and all hard work put into it. You are really helping us (parents) now and truly creating a better future for our children by helping them to become better human beings.

Alex, Eugenia and Nina

The programme was so convenient with the family visitor calling to my home and the family visitor always scheduled the appointments that suited me.

Fiona, a very happy parent

Just to let you know and say thanks for a little girl whom you saw, and I had been seeing at my clinic. The tasks and skills that the Lifestart worker instructed mum with and the Naonra class etc. has helped [name removed] greatly and she has improved an awful lot…

Dr. L. McBride, Senior Medical Officer Child Health, HSE, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

Parenting Tips

2602, 2021

Sibling Rivalry ‘A very normal emotion’

In your child’s early years they gradually develop a sense of who they are and what they can become.  And in this process it is quite common for them to experience feelings of jealousy towards other children. A very common form of jealousy is 'sibling rivalry', which for any of you out there who have siblings of your own, will know what I’m talking about.  I myself have 2 brothers and 2 sisters and even as grown-ups I think there [...]

1902, 2021

Quality Child Care

Just as your settling into life with your new little 4 month old bundle of love, you start to think/worry about returning to work. You could be returning at 6 – 9 months or maybe you are privileged enough to take one year of work. Thoughts start to race through your head about how you’re going to cope back at work if your little one isn’t sleeping all night, how are you going to leave him or her, will your [...]

502, 2021

The Sound of Music

Music and song have so many benefits for children of all ages. Not only is it lots of fun, it can help… soothe or calm a baby when upset accelerate brain development support language development encourage co-ordination and motor skills increase social and emotional abilities promote relaxation and sleep Issues 36 and 38 of the Growing Child highlight some of these advantages together with a selection of songs that are a huge hit with young children. Lots of people think [...]

2901, 2021

Ground Hog Day!

The majority of people we talk to this weather seem to be finding this lock-down much more difficult.  People are tired, and there seems to be no end in sight.  This time of year we are usually looking at where we could go for a wee break or even planning summer holidays, whether we can afford it or not.  The fact that we can’t even plan to go out for something to eat, is let’s face it, unreal.  Unfortunately though [...]

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