James is the founder of the Positive Parenting Alliance and creator of the Parents Promise. Having seen up close the multitude of issues in the family courts and the numbers of children and parents affected James wanted to begin a new conversation about separation. In May 2021, after many conversations with like-minded people and organisations the Parents Promise was launched.
James Hayhurst, Founder, Parents Promise
"On the 26th of December, 2012, we received a
phone call from
a distressed parent, anxious that they might not remember how to love the child they
hadn't seen for
over two years. That call has stayed with us; a constant reminder of why we do, what we
do. The Parent
Promise is long overdue."
Bob Greig & Rebecca Giraud, co-founders OnlyMums&Dads
"Ongoing family tensions is one of the most
that children bring to Place2Be's one-to-one counselling. One nine-year-old girl told us
put the child first. Tell the child that it's not their fault that they're splitting
up.' We are proud
to support The Parents' Promise, which we believe could have a powerful and long-lasting
impact on the
wellbeing of children across the UK and beyond."
Catherine Roche, Chief Executive, Place2Be
"High levels of conflict between parents can
damage to children's wellbeing and outcomes in life. Relate supports The Parents
Promise, which is a
positive commitment to always put children's needs at the centre of separation and
happens in the couple relationship."
Aidan Jones, Chief Executive at Relate
"Relationships sometimes end. Family units
shift and change,
and although challenging, it doesn’t need to be toxic and damaging to children. Black
believe that given the right support and commitment there can be an alternative
approach. For this
reason we (BMU) wholeheartedly support the Parent Promise movement to empower and
support parents to
navigate separation and co parenting with healthy communication and child-centred
Endy Mckay, Carina White, Natalie Duvall, Nana-Adwoa Mbeutcha, Founders, Black Mums Upfront
"This past year has reminded us all of the
family relationships – and of their fragility. The Two Wishes Foundation promotes a
fresh, and more
compassionate, approach for vulnerable and separating families, focused on providing
education and much earlier, health-focused interventions when needed."
Dr David Curl, CEO, Two Wishes Foundation
"We know that poorly managed relationship
breakdown can have
a devastating impact on children's long-term health and wellbeing. The Save Childhood
very much supports the move towards constructive new forms of cooperative parenting
during and following
Wendy Elliot, Founder, Save Childhood Movement
"Separation can have a big impact on the health
of children and parents. Positive relationships are vital for the mental wellbeing of
all members of a
family and maintaining harmonious relationships should always be a priority when family
Dr Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness
"The Parents Promise asks parents to reflect on
might behave towards their partner, should their relationship break down. Tavistock
supports the Parents Promise and hopes it will mean fewer children suffer as a result of
conflict between parents who separate."
Andrew Balfour, Chief Executive, Tavistock Relationships
"The evidence is clear. Co-operative parenting
(whether parents are together or apart) leads to the best outcomes for children. The
Parents Promise requires a commitment from both parents to manage their differences
constructively, so they can co-operate in ensuring their child's long-term well-being
and quality of life"
Penny Mansfield CBE, co-director, OnePlusOne
"We see time and time again in the Frolo
valuable an amicable and supportive relationship between parents following a separation
can be in terms
of the emotional wellbeing of both parents and, most importantly, the children. Frolo
initiative that encourages positive relationships between separated parents, and offers
parents where this isn't possible."
Zoë Desmond, founder of Frolo
"Fegans is passionate about the promise because
children at the heart of all parents thinking, whether they are together, parting or
promise has the power to transform Childrens lives if, as a nation, we can grip its
truth...great parenting is always about the children, not the parents."
Ian Soars, CEO of Fegans
"As an active member of the legal community and
the damage that separation can cause we at MD Communications are proud supporters of the
which will support and encourage parents who are separating to do this in a way which
protects and puts
the mental health of their children at the forefront."
Melissa Davis, Founder & CEO, MD Communications
"It’s time to reimagine how we think about, and
family breakdown. To give all our children the brightest possible futures, and to
protect them from
harm, we need to start treating family breakdown as a major health and social issue,
instead of a legal
Karen Clarke, Ambassador, For Kids Sake
"Children of all ages are impacted by change
and there is no
bigger change for a child than their family separating. Sadly the emotional turmoil for
parents as they
go through this transition often results in children’s own emotions being overlooked,
presumed or even
harmed and very rarely are their voices heard. The more we can educate families about
better ways to
separate and help our children through such a traumatic time the better chance we have
longer term problems for their futures."
Helen Pittard, Voices in the Middle
"Children should always come first no matter
what and this
should never be forgotten. Instead of being used as weapons, it's important for them to
relationship with both parents where there's no risk. Their feelings and wellbeing
should come above all
else. Please show your support for this campaign."
Aruna Bansal, Asian Single Parents Network CIC, Founder
"When you're a parent, your relationship doesn't end if you divorce and separate; it changes. The transition from parents to co-parents is a difficult one. amicable believes that the negative impact of separating can be significantly reduced if parents have already had the tricky conversation of what would happen if they end up separating. Signing the Parenting Promise signals that, whilst a romantic relationship may be over, the commitment to support each other to raise resilient, happy children doesn't."
"FFLAG wholeheartedly supports the Parents' Promise. In a world in which LGBT+ children often encounter hostility outside the family, having confidence that they will always have the love and full support of their parents is crucial to their wellbeing. Similarly, the sexuality or gender identity of a parent does not alter any child's need for both parents' love."
"Every day divorcing parents join our forum for support through divorce. We want to acknowledge and openly discuss the damage that conflicted family breakdown can do to children. More needs to be done to help separating parents to resolve conflicts outside of the courts, access services such as family mediation and to support them towards the goal of long-term co-operative parenting. The Promise is an important start to that conversation."
"The parents promise is a great reminder of our duties as parents to create an environment our children can strive in to be better contributors to society. Its reminder to parents that our focus and legacy is built creating and enhancing those environments for our children. This is why at Legacy Lifestyle Podcast we support the parents promise for the betterment, growth and enrichment of every child."
"CFS are delighted to be involved in this initiative. It's completely in line with our shared parenting ethos especially in keeping the child as the focus."
"Family Lives welcomes any initiative that helps to support families and relationships that are under pressure. Supporting and listening to parents helps to reduce conflict and potential harm, and provides an opportunity to place the children at the heart of the conversation"
"The National Association of Child Contact Centres (NACCC) are firm believers that 'Parenting Shouldn't End When Relationships Do'. Children deserve safe, healthy and fulfilling relationships with both parents. NACCC are truly honoured to support this initiative and we will do all we can to support parents to make and keep the #ParentsPromise"
"Dads Unlimited supports early intervention programmes to reduce parental conflict and improve the lives for both the parents, and the children of separated parents. The Parents Promise helps to focus parents on the long-term goal of a positive co-parenting environment from within which they and their children can thrive."
"At a time of great uncertainties for children when their parents separate it is vital the parents always put the children first. The children love both their parents and wider family members, they just want to be loved. This has become a public health issue and should be treated as such. Bristol Grandparents Support Group are delighted to be able to endorse The Parents Promise, we make a promise to each other when we get married, the promise needs to include our children."
Jane Jackson, Founder Bristol Grandparents Support Group
"Many of our families are concerned about their children's exposure to conflict and hostile communications, and OurFamilyWizard is designed to protect their children from suffering. We are proud to support the Parents Promise, which works to prevent these issues by putting the children first from the beginning. The Promise prepares and empowers parents to give their children a positive co-parenting experience."
James Evans, Our Family Wizard
"The Parent Promise is everything that we stand for at The Motivational Mums Club and Young Positive Minds. Yes, sometimes families go their separate ways and unfortunately it can have an impact on the mental health of the child and even the parent/s if managed in a way that is toxic. We've seen the effects this can have on the mental health of the child and parent/s which has led to long term issues. This is why we stand with The Parents Promise to promote a healthy separation for all parties included."
Christina Brown, Founder of The Motivational Mums Club and Young Positive Minds
"Separation and divorce are a part of life, but that should not distract attention from the relationship with your children. Working together to nurture your child into a happy, confident individual is a priceless gift for any parent to offer. Child maintenance disputes are a regular source of animosity between parents. NACSA fully supports 'The Parents Promise' and look forward to this campaign achieving better outcomes for our children. "