FLiP FACULTY APPROVED PARENTING COORDINATOR - REBECCA HAWKINS
Having been a specialist family lawyer for many years, I have seen many times the damage that conflict can do. It hurts the separating couple, their families and most often, their children and it can be done differently.
I am passionate about helping separating families have a more dignified and respectful separation.
I qualified as a lawyer in 1999 and have been a mediator since 2007. Initially a Director in a high street practice, I left in 2011 to concentrate full time on mediation and divorce coaching, as this sat well with me – having had my own children I didn’t feel comfortable with the adversarial norm at the time. Subsequently I decided to continue my legal practice and work in a niche ADR firm promoting ADR work wherever possible. I sit as co-chair of the local Contact Centre.
I think my clients would say that I listen to them without judging and that I try and help them resist a confrontation by learning new strategies and skills. Seeing a couple come out the other side, having really tried their best to put their adult feelings to one side to ensure their children are kept at the centre of all they do is a very powerful and moving experience.
Parenting Coordination provides a safe and neutral place to work on parenting relationships, and incorporates elements of coaching, mediation, information giving and education in a calm environment. It encourages the practitioner to have a long term relationship with clients, rather than the typical shorter term solutions that mediation or traditional law provide. I believe that sometimes mediation is not enough, and that clients need more compassionate support, which is what this process can give them.