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What is a family?

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This week is National Families Week, coinciding with the International Day of Families on May 15.  These events are about highlighting and celebrating the vital role that families play in our communities. Celebrant Melanie Lawson from Oberon, NSW takes a look at the many different family groups that make up our society.

The theme of National Families Week is ‘Stronger Families, Stronger Communities’. The campaign encourages communities and families to get together and celebrate.  Families might like to hold a family gathering; catch up with cousins you haven’t seen for a while; or create a new photo or story book detailing the history of your family.  For communities, events include reaching out to other families in your area by offering to babysit, hosting a picnic or producing a newsletter about family-friendly activities in your area.

 

National Family Week prompts us to think about the concept of a family.  In Western society, we might think of a traditional nuclear family made up of a mother, father and a couple of children.  However, we all know that families are so much more.  Families are as diverse as the world is round.  Cultural, economic and social factors give rise to a great variety of relationships that can be defined as ‘family’.

 

So…a family could be:

  • Multi-generational: parents, grandparents and children sharing their home and their lives
  • Blended: Couples marrying and bringing children from previous relationships together into a new household
  • Gender diverse: Gay couples or gender fluid children as part of loving family groups
  • Adopted or fostered: Families making room for children or adults who need a home.



And let’s not forget about our furry friends!  A family is based on support, love and connection.  This can be expressed in so many ways and transcends distance and time.  Families are the base from which we set out to explore the world, and the place we come back to when it all goes wrong. 
Families support individuals and communities so take time this week to reflect and acknowledge all that is good about your family! 

Why not consider asking one of our celebrants to create a ceremony to celebrate all that is great in your family? 

 

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Friday, 18 June 2021

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