A Parent Representative is someone who acts to represent the views of parents who have a baby (ies) in neonatal care, to ensure that premature and sick babies' voices are placed at the heart decision making and their interests are always put first.
The role of Parent Representative can vary quite significantly between networks depending on the approach the network takes to parental involvement. You may be asked to participate in or lead meetings with parents in your local unit, communicating their views up to the board. You may also be asked to sit on the network board, to give a parent's perspective on decisions around service improvement. In addition to board meetings, you may be asked to attend meetings with parents as well as external meetings. Some groups of Parent Representatives have also undertaken other projects, such as an audit of the facilities in the network's units.
Some networks do not yet have parental representation, but Bliss is working to try and change this. If you are interested in the role, please contact us via HCP@bliss.org.uk.
This will vary from network to network. If you sit on the board there will be the opportunity to attend face to face meetings throughout the year. These meetings may rotate between different hospitals in the network. Where possible Networks provide the opportunity to feed in to these meetings remotely if you are unable to travel.
Where possible, Network boards will cover any travel expenses that you incur. This should include petrol, parking, train or bus fares.
No, there are no qualifications to be a Parent Representative. The only requirement is that you have had a baby who has spent time on a neonatal unit – preferably within the past five years.
Bliss suggests that parents should have had a baby on a neonatal unit within the past five years and be a year post discharge.
It is essential that you are not in any ongoing disputes or have any unresolved complaints with a unit in the network.
We are currently looking for Parent Representatives for the following networks. Click the links below to see what units they cover and find out a bit more about these networks:
Please note, the Parent Representative role is a Network role and not a Bliss volunteer role.
If you are interested in any of these roles, or would like to check whether your network is currently recruiting, please contact us at HCP@bliss.org.uk or call 020 7378 1122.