The first NBO training to take place in Hong Kong was presented on September 9-10th, 2016. The training was hosted by the Hong Kong Association for Infant Mental Health (HKAIMH) and was coordinated by Joyce MOK, President of HKAIMH, assisted by K.H. Chung, from the Executive Committee of HKAIMH. Trainers were J. Kevin Nugent and Campbell Paul. Thirty participants from a range of professions including midwives, psychologists, psychiatrists, pediatricians, social workers, physical therapists & occupational therapists took part (See group photo above). The evaluations of the training were extremely positive and trainees were excited about the possibility of learning to integrate the NBO into their respective settings. For all participants the live NBO sessions, which were facilitated by Joyce Mok and her colleagues and took place at the United Christian Hospital in Kowloon, were especially revealing in that they highlighted the strength-based relational character of the NBO philosophy and the importance of including the parents as partners in the NBO session. The mentoring process is already in progress.

Giving parents a good foundation to prepare their journey as a parent for life.

By Dr. Bianca Sin-Wan HO, Hong Kong Shue Yan University

Hello all, greetings from Hong Kong. I work in the Department of Counselling and Psychology as a senior lecturer and assistant director for the Master of Social Science in Counselling Psychology program of Hong Kong Shue Yan University. On private practice, I am a counselling psychologist who mostly works with infants, toddlers, kindergartners and their parents to provide parenting counselling, class, and consultation. The NBO was first introduced in Hong Kong in November, 2015, when Prof. Campbell Paul came to deliver a training on Attachment inventions in the newly established Hong Kong Infant Mental Health Association. Prof. Campbell introduced how the NBO could be an early intervention to help building of a strong infant-parent-bond at the very early moments of the infant's life. I found it really fascinating as being a counselling psychologist, we share the importance of preventive interventions and in my own clinical experience, I have discovered many "broken" parent-child-relationship seems to have a root in the very beginning of life. Therefore, I immediately signed myself up for the next available NBO training that was held in Melbourne, Australia. 

After the training, I have brainstormed a lot of different ways to promote NBO to parents in HK and eventually I decided to conduct a research study using NBO as a mean to reach the new parents. This study is a pilot study that evaluate the effectiveness of NBO in promoting parent-infant-attachment with new parents in Hong Kong. Along with this study, outcome measures including infant's characteristics, sleeping pattern and behaviors, and social and emotional development and parenting measures like parenting efficacy, postnatal depression, and parenting stress are being measured as well. In this pilot study, we aimed at recruiting 15 participants, in a short period of 1-month, we recruited 30 participants altogether in a public prenatal event; 22 was qualified for the inclusion criteria (1st time mother) and were included as participants. Thus far, we have collected data from 10 mother-infant-dyads and have conducted 6 NBOs. All these parents have not heard about NBO prior to their participation of the study. Although, we have not start analyzing the data; verbal feedback from parents have been positive. Through the NBO, one parent shared "I didn't really know infant this young is already capable of recognizing my voice and interacting with us. I thought I wouldn't be able to "play" with him until they are at least couple months old (with a genuinely bright smile)". She continues "So, I can really start to think about singing and reading to him. I always thought infant wouldn't understand or care". It was a very rewarding experience for myself both clinically and personally. 

The positive experience of using the NBO with Hong Kong parents and the positive feedback I got really motivated me to do more. I am currently preparing a grant proposal, hoping to get some funding to support my research with NBO so that I can reach out to more parents and the public. Apart from conducting research, I have also taken every opportunity to share with others about NBO in seminars, talks, workshop, or trainings that I deliver. I truly hope that more new parents would get to know and benefit from the NBO: to give them a good foundation to prepare their journey as a parent for life.