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Silverwater Activity Day wins over kids and mums with fairy bread and hugs!

On a beautiful day with the sun shining on a green grass area at Silverwater Women’s Correctional Centre, a group of excited children run into their mother’s open arms at the beginning of our Child & Parent Day.

These special days held during school holidays are a chance for children to bond and make happy memories of doing something ‘regular’ with their parent, like making craft, sharing a meal and sitting in the sun having a long chat.

These days are always full of colour, and of course, no Child & Parent Day would be complete without GLITTER!

Fairy bread, rainbow art supplies, sporting gear, and even an air hockey table had been secured for the children to make it a memorable visit.

The families

Eden*, 15, sat with her mum, Liane, on a mat in the sun and set about creating beaded jewellery to swap as tokens of love.

They were joined by another mother with her 13-year-old daughter Sarah*, and they swapped techniques for making the perfect bracelet and shared some laughs.

Meanwhile, the little ones were busy building, running, and generally trying everything within sight!

Tegan* raced around with her three-year-old son Andy* as he drove the toy trains and stacked blocks, kicked the soccer ball, and took himself and Mum on a great imaginary fishing trip with the fishing set. And, of course, air hockey!

Eden*, 15, sat with her mum, Liane, on a mat in the sun and set about creating beaded jewellery to swap as tokens of love.

One family had driven over two hours to attend and wanted to make the most out of every special minute with their mum.

The family, mum with children Megan*, 8, and Troy*, 5, decorated photo frames together, and a photo was taken of the three of them smiling together to put in their new frames. The children will be able to look at it when they are home, and it can help in those moments when being apart feels too hard.

Mum Karen* had her hands full as her four children clamoured to get her attention!

Aged from 7 to 12, the family tried every activity together, but their favourite was painting their hands and creating a special poster that Karen could take back to her room.

They do this every activity day visit, and seeing how their hands grow bigger each time helps her feel confident they are flourishing even though she can’t be with them and focus on getting to a future where she can hold their hands every day.

A ‘normal’ special day

“The mums get to make it feel like a normal day by providing their kids with morning tea and lunch, just like they would at home,” says local SHINE for Kids team member Linda, “To watch the interactions between mums and their children is priceless.”

These days are also a chance for the mums to make friends with other mums at the centre and bond in a more relaxed environment.

One way this was shown was how they collaborated and worked as a group to share the food and activities.

Our student volunteer said, “I loved how they made fairy bread for everyone present, passing it around so everyone could have some.”

“It was a great activity that allowed multiple families to come together. The mothers helped the children create the bread, and everyone had a part in the production line. This helped the family come together and make something as a team.”

Goodbye for now

Saying goodbye is always hard, but knowing another Child & Parent Day is just around the corner makes it a little easier.

“Thank you”, said one mum to our team, “I can’t wait for the next one.”

The carers of the children who attended have also expressed their heartfelt thanks.

One grandfather made an effort to approach our team after the session and express his gratitude. He said that things would have been much harder for his teenage granddaughter without these days. He said the local team member he’s been dealing with has been a huge support to the entire family.

One of the children who attended told us that these days are great, and what’s changed the most for her since being able to come is that now she feels “well connected with mum.”

Thank you to all of the team at Silverwater Correctional Centre and the Governor who made this Child & Parent Day a big success and supported the event with food donations.

Thank you also to our amazing volunteers. Long-time volunteer Hisae said, “We had such a beautiful day! … It would be great to have more days like this that strengthen the connection between mums and children during this difficult time.”

Please donate today and help support children with a parent in custody. 



Silverwater Activity Day wins over kids and mums with fairy bread and hugs!

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