Parents and parents-to-be are invited to come along to the PFDC Parents Network for breakfast and informal networking.  Whether you are at the start of your journey or you are trying to get to grips with having a teenager at home, why not come along and meet some other postdocs and fellows who are in a similar boat!

This is an opportunity for you to come to share your stories and maybe get a tip or two on some of the parenting-related questions you may have.  A member of HR will also usually be present to answer your questions in relation to maternity, paternity, shared parental leave, adoption and flexible working.
This network is for postdocs and fellows only. 

Information about the next PFDC Parents Network can be found in the PFDC Newsletter.
For further information please email PFDC Consultant Karen Hinxman
The information contained below may be helpful for parents or parents-to-be at Imperial:

Options

Family friendly initiatives

  • Imperial Parents’ Network Website
    Your one-stop-shop for all relevant policies and information related to being a parent at Imperial.  This is also where you will find further information on some of the initiatives mentioned below.  
  • Maternity Buddy Scheme
    The College operates a Maternity Buddy Scheme pre and post-maternity for staff. It gives you the opportunity to be paired with a maternity returner who has been back in the workplace for a few months and who can act as a sounding board to answer any questions you may have.
  • Babies & Bumps
    Take place the first Tuesday of every month, 10:30 – 11:30 in the College Café. New parents and parents-to-be are invited to meet other Imperial Colleagues in a similar situation for informal networking and mutual support.
    HR will be present to answer any questions in relation to maternity, paternity and shared parental leave. 
  • Nursing Rooms
    Designated resting and nursing rooms are available across the campuses for use by pregnant women needing to rest and women returning from maternity leave needing to express milk or nurse their baby. The rooms are available for both staff and students.   
  • Parent Mentoring Scheme
    Trained parent mentors are available for all staff who are pregnant, on family leave or have returned from family leave. They can provide support on a wide range of issues such as childcare, professional image and work/life balance.
  • Coaching for new parents
    Coaching is a 1-2-1 process that helps individuals think through their options in relation to a range of situations they may be facing in the workplace. Coaching is a confidential and voluntary process, involving up to 4 meetings over a period of 3-6 months. 
  • Early Years Education Centre
    The Centre is based at Nos. 8 & 9 Prince's Gardens and caters for children of staff and students aged from six months to five years.
  • Child-friendly food, toys and books in the College Cafe every weekday from 8 am-9 am. Miss the rush hour and join other parents at the children’s breakfast club. 

Please contact parents@imperial.ac.uk if you have any questions.

Workshops for new parents

The College runs the following free workshops which look at the practical and emotional aspects of parenthood, to enable you to develop your careers through effective planning and communication.
They come highly recommended by the postdocs and fellows who have attended.
Further information about when they are taking place and how to book can be found here.

Preparing for Maternity/Adoption Leave
Managing change of image at work, maintaining confidence during pregnancy, maintaining professional relationships, planning maternity/adoption leave and a successful handover, preparing for the maternity/adoption leave shock, thinking ahead to a successful return

Working Parents
Identifying a better work/life balance, managing your childcare, separation anxiety, managing your career/remaining influential even if working part-time/flexible, networking tips, image at work, managing time and stress levels, building support networks

New Fathers/Partners
Managing the change, managing expectations- pressures to perform both at work and family life, strengthen relationships, understanding the challenges faced by mothers, fathers and partners and identify solutions, practicalities – childcare, sleep deprivation. 

Other support schemes

  • My Family Care
    This company provides a range of services for parents and carers to help you really make work+family work. Free guides and webinars are available online for registered members. They also offer expert childcare searches and emergency childcare at competitive rates, nationwide. Please register online for further information and to access the free support.  
  • Tax-Free Childcare
    The Government’s Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) scheme is available to all who qualify.  TFC pays for 20% of childcare costs up to certain limits.  For further details on your eligibility and entitlements, please visit the gov.uk website’s childcare calculator at www.gov.uk/childcare-calculator 
  • Confidential Care
    The College’s employee assistance provider, Confidential Care, can offer you support when you return to work. A free 24-hour confidential advice line is also available for practical and emotional support.
  • Occupational Health
    Please see the occupational health web pages for information on their service provision
  • Grants for Academic Returners
    This webpage outlines a number of resources available to assist with the transition back to work.