June 15, 2012 > Parent Talk with Vidya Pradhan
Parent Talk with Vidya Pradhan
By Jessica Noel Flohr
Parenting is a challenging job. Mothers and fathers worry constantly about the little ones in their care. Is this the best school? Should the children play a sport? What's the best way to parent after a divorce? These are just a few of the questions parents wrestle with every day. The old adage, "it takes a village to raise a child," has never been more true. With the ever-changing face of modern families, parents need of a community of support to help them through the many challenges of the child-rearing years.
Tanuja Bahal, executive director of the India Community Center (ICC) in Milpitas, saw such a need among ICC members. She used this inspiration to start a radio show addressing the unique situations South Asian parents struggle with in raising their children. Bahal shared the concept with writer and mother Vidya Pradhan and the show, Parent Talk, began in October 2011. "A lot of us are young parents with young kids and Tanuja thought it would be good to do a show for the Indian community," said Pradhan.
Since its inception, Parent Talk has addressed topics such as parenting children with special needs, the effects of divorce on kids, post-partum depression, nutrition, homework, discipline, and many others. Parent Talk is in its infancy but is growing steadily. Because the show tackles some hard topics, callers sometimes feel hesitant to contribute. Pradhan and Bahal feel that it is vital to bring these issues out in the open. Pradhan says, "Through the show, I've met very talented service providers throughout the Indian community. They do really stellar work in the community and are highlighting things that we don't talk about."
The radio show is a natural extension of the India Community Center's educational endeavors. The ICC has always been host to many educational and children's events. Yearly summer camps have been extremely popular and three students from the program's table tennis team recently qualified for the London Summer Olympics. Later this summer, the ICC launches its Preschool Program, with a special focus on intergenerational curriculum involving the seniors active at the ICC. Parent Talk was intended as a tie-in to this new program as a means to better serve the parents in the community.
Pradhan feels that it is very challenging for South Asian parents to avoid getting caught up in excessive competition, especially in the Silicon Valley. There is tremendous pressure to ensure that students are at peak performance, participate in the best extra-curricular programs, and get into the best colleges. It's easy for difficulties to get swept under the rug. Thankfully, Parent Talk is making it easier for these issues to be addressed in the open. Pradhan says, "These things are more common than you might think. There's no need to be embarrassed. There is support; there are solutions. Don't be afraid to speak out."
This month Parent Talk is focusing on the transition from high school to college. The Saturday morning show will discuss a different aspect of college life and getting into college each week. Guest speakers will address eating healthy while in school, living independently, handling finances, and how students can deal with stress. Listeners can tune in from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on 1550AM, Radio Zindagi, or listen live through Radio Zindagi's Facebook page. Shows are archived online at http://www.indiacc.org/parenttalk.
ICC Parent Talk
10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Radio Zindagi 1550AM