NORTH BAY -- Listen, respond, and connect with your child is a key message for parents from the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit.

It’s the first of four key messages of its new parenting campaign to be rolled out over the next few months.

Doris Chartrand, a public health nurse, says the goal is to raise awareness for parents about the importance of a child’s sense to be safe, secure and loved.

“Our campaign is also based on the importance of the parent and child relationship, and these early relationships are really important for children’s growth and development, and more importantly their social and emotional competences,” said Chartrand.

Another key message in the campaign is to remind parents that with today’s pressures to juggle all the demands placed on them, that they make time to take care of themselves and to reassure them that even small moments with their children count.

April Porter, who manages the EarlyON program, says this campaign has been in the works for three years and they took input from what parents wanted to see.

“We want families to understand that parenting is a celebration but there are also times when you need extra support,” said Porter.

Father of three, Brett Hanson, says he thinks the campaign’s messages are helpful as a parent.

“They’re kind of things you sort of thought you knew deep down,  but it’s nice to hear them reinforced and kind of a reminder that your instincts are correct and remind you that it’s okay to say I need a break from the kids once in a while, ” said Hanson.

He says they serve as good reminders for parents who might get caught up in day to day activities and forget to take the time to do these things.

Next month’s key message is to help your child work through their emotions, followed by let your child play. These messages will be displayed throughout the Nipissing and Parry Sound Districts.