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Procter & Gamble

Procter & Gamble

Procter & Gamble Czech Republic, a. s., supports the activities and development of Mothers' Centers from the Procter & Gamble Fund for Mothers' Centers

Procter & Gamble

The Procter & Gamble Program for Mothers Centers

“The Considerate Little Buglet,” a project of the Chrudim Mama Club
“The sun was inching toward the west and the little buglet was just getting up…” Do you know the story? This is how the book, The Buglets, by Jan Karafiát begins. A book that was read way back when there were still horse drawn carriages in the streets, planes had not yet taken to the air, and telephones were a thing of dreams. Time moves on and now children are caught up in their mobile telephones, computers, and televisions, while the lure of nature is often pushed to the back burner.

The mothers of the Chrudim Mama Club, one of more than one hundred Mothers’ Centers that have been created in the Czech Republic since 1990, are however not indifferent to this problem. What the centers all have in common, in addition to their bottom-up approach to family self-help based on volunteer work, informality and solidarity, is their aim to engage the interest of young children in nature from an early age and to cultivate a relationship between their children and the environment.

And thus, we come back again to Jan Karafiát and his book. In November 2004, the Mama Club launched the project The Considerate Little Buglet for pre-schoolers and school children and their families, which over a period of several months had the aim of “drawing” children back to nature and planting a seed of understanding about its wonders.

Easy to say, but how does one achieve this? In the Mama Club, they chose the mediums most understandable to children – fairy tales, personal experience, and a hands-on approach. In November 2004, the Considerate Little Buglet embarked upon a lantern procession through Chrudim on its way to “winter hibernation”. Children, parents and grandparents took part in the procession and the town square twinkled with the lights of the numerous lanterns, while a scene from Karafiát’s The Little Buglet played on a stage.

Following the “Buglet’s hibernation,” the Mama Club organized a cycle of six fifty-minute long morning programs focused on ecological themes, called The Considerate Little Buglet School. The programs combined story telling, exercise, yoga for children. It also included theatre accompanied by an arts and crafts program working with natural materials such as wicker, clay, paper and fleece. The program was divided into special sections, such as: The Bee –about how bees live in the hive; How the Mole got Trousers – where the children listened to the well-known fairy tale and then tried to make a thread from flax and then weave it into cloth; or Food for Birds, where children listened to a tale about how animals prepare for winter and then made food for birds as well as simple feeders from flower-pots. The program continued into 2005 with a section dedicated to making hand-made paper with lessons on the importance of recycling trash and “Spring has come to the Countryside,” in which children acted in a small play showing the land shaking off its winter hibernation.

The Mama Club also organized a Ceramics Class workshop taught by a trained professional. The class took place over 4 weekends (from November 2004 – April 2005) and included working with clay and glazing. The children modeled such things as animals, plants, and flower pots out of clay. In conclusion, there was an exhibition of the children’s works in the Mama Center with a school fair on the theme of treating nature with respect.

What can we say in conclusion? Perhaps it is best to close with the words of Regina Losenická from the Mama Club, who was responsible for The Considerate Little Buglet program:

“I think that our meetings helped the children to begin thinking about nature around them as a good friend, with whom it is good to be with and to have fun with, but also as something that needs looking after. The mothers also made the discovery that, at a time when it is possible to buy everything readymade, creating something with your own hands, even if it is not completely perfect, is for both them, and those near to them, in itself priceless.”

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Last updated: 11/06/2006
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