HUG Your Baby Returns to Italy (Part 1)

Benedetta Costa (PT and Certified HUG Teacher) had joined us last year at the HUG Your Baby Train the Trainer in Durham, NC, so imagine our delight when Jim and I met Benedetta at the Genoa Nervi train station this week to bring the first, full HUG Your Baby training to Italy. Though Benedetta and I have had many Skype conferences over the past six months, we were still busy with last-minute translating, slide production, schedule creation, and alignment of our HUG content, teaching styles, and workshop goals. It proved to be a glorious collaboration and I can’t wait until tomorrow!

Benedetta’s “Center Papillon” was a welcoming, spacious and well-equipped place to host this two-day HUG Your Baby workshop. Twenty enthusiastic colleagues (including infant massage educators, lactation consultants, doulas, physicians, nurses, speech therapists, and psychologists) were eager participants from the moment we opened the doors. I spoke English which Benedetta translated. When Bendetta shared her expertise and stories, her sister, Berni translated her words and the participants’ responses into my left ear. We looked like we had done this for years! 

Italian colleagues were intrigued by many of the same HUG items that inspire our American colleagues: the attachment exercise is instructive; the Zone and SOS language is easy to understand; timely information on managing crying/sleep issues is critical; parents will be delighted to see the amazing abilities of their newborn; and finally, “The Roadmap” makes good sense!


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Every time I begin a workshop I wonder “Will this group catch the HUG Your Baby spirit?” Clearly, our Italian colleagues were engaged and inspired by The HUG stories, the interactive activities, and The HUG DVD. We had fun once again sharing the developmental task “pyramid” activity to help participants see how parents’ understanding and support of this developmental process can enhance a baby’s ability to interact with her world. 

The circle ball game was a fun way to review what we had learned the day before and the newly created Italian HUG jeopardy game was a big hit. 

More to come. . .