Children’s wellbeing and mental health crucially depend on the quality of relationships with caregivers and peers. How this works, is still partly unknown. Our central mission is to contribute to these relationships, especially for children and families who are marginalized, stigmatized, at risk, or face mental or physical health problems. We contribute to research and theory on parenting, attachment, family relationships, self-regulation, social cognitions, and the interplay between individual and environmental factors, among others.
We conduct our work with partners in the field of child and family welfare, social welfare, and disability care. Our aim is to provide the building blocks for better understanding of family relationships and for better practice and policy to support those relationships. Preferably, projects not only describe and explain, but also transform practice for the better.
Within the project Generations2 (www.generaties2.nl), we work with over 2.000 families who share their experiences from the beginning of pregnancy of the first child. This helps us to learn about the transition to parenthood, in relation to expectations and feelings related to parents’ own upbringing. We learn about the different ways in which parent-child relationships develop, and how this forms the basis for self-realization and mental health.