Industry mums set up working parents support group

A network support group has been set up to help working parents across the travel industry. 

‘Back in time for bed’ (BITFB) has been devised by Vicky Billing, head of partnerships at Riviera Travel, and Anna Perrott, head of supplier relations at Panache Cruises.

The group will be active across social media and run events on a range of subjects, with the aim of helping parents who are balancing their career and home life.

The group has five aims:

  • To act as a hub to connect parents
  • To enable hints, tips and recommendations to be made from and to parents across the group
  • To provide more formal advice and resources, e.g. maternity leave and return to work rights
  • To act as an open, ‘safe space’ forum, with discussions to include challenging and contentious subjects
  • To provide light relief, particularly when childcare is at its most difficult

Their first session is a remote ‘lunch and learn’, open to everyone across the travel industry, with the Association of Women Travel Executives on March 1. 

A panel of experts will explore ‘parent guilt’ and how to cope with the pressure of matching up to the images of parenthood seen in the media or on social media.

The two bodies are looking to collaborate again and are considering sessions on topics including fertility, adoption and legal obligations. 

A series of Facebook Live events will follow, with details to be announced shortly.

Billing said: “I absolutely love the travel industry and, as a busy mum, want to give back to everyone in the same position as I am. 

“Being a parent is the ultimate mix of being rewarding and challenging, and I’m confident BITFB will help make things just a little bit easier for all of us. We want parents to know they’re not alone and we’re all going through the same experiences.”

Perrott said: “Being a mum is the hardest job I have ever done and I am constantly doing my best to navigate the work-life balance. 

“We all struggle to juggle, for instance when pulling an all-nighter and then having a full day’s meetings. 

“By being there for one another, and providing the resources and communications channels to assist with everything parent-related, we’ll help parents be back in time for bed – and hopefully get some sleep themselves.”

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