Being a parent is a tough job.

Healthiest Manitowoc County (HMC) wants to make sure families are supported and feel connected to the community.

Through the Investing Early Coalition of HMC, a Parent Café Work Group was formed. The cafés created by the group are a great opportunity for parents to come together to listen, talk, build friendships and support each other around the topic of parenting.

A free meal and onsite childcare are also offered as part of the cafés.

Strengthening families is the core of the cafés, which focus on the following five strengths:

  1. Parent resilience;
  2. Relationships;
  3. Support;
  4. Knowledge; and
  5. Communication

Participants leave the cafés feeling inspired, energized and excited to put into practice what they’ve learned.

Two café types are offered: cafés for parents of children with different abilities and special needs, and cafés open to the community.

Cafés for different abilities/special needs will be from 5 to 7 p.m. July 16 and Aug. 21 at Lakeshore CAP, 702 State St. RSVP to Lisa Stephan at 920-683-2792 or

The community-wide parent cafés are open to anyone interested in connecting with others who are parenting and would like to learn about strengthening their family through conversation focused on the “five strengths of parenting.” Community wide cafés will begin in the fall and will be at CESA No. 7 Head Start, 1130 S. Ninth St., Manitowoc. For dates and times, contact Tracy Klesper at 920-686-8715 or email at

-Lisa Stephen is a member of the Investing Early Coalition of Healthiest Manitowoc County.

Published by Herald Times Reporter on July 1st, 2019