• “Our parents welcome the strengths based positive and practical approach of the Adolescents Programme. They report increased communication and positive relationships within their families. The adolescents who do the Working Things Our programme notice improvements in relationships with parents and some report, reduced need for outside supports after attendance”

  • “I run Parents Plus programmes all of the time in my work. The lasting message that parents take away is to ‘Press the Pause Button’. In our lives, we all need to press that button now and again. It’s ok to get frustrated. It’s how we deal with that frustration; whether as parents with their children, or humans with other humans”.

  • “Working with the parents is the cornerstone of working with the children in our service”“Parents Plus programmes are very informative, whatever capacity in which you work with parents. The content of the programme materials are excellent”

  • “I really liked the solution oriented way of enabling parents to talk to each other…they said things to each other that I’d never have gotten away with, and really listened and took it on board.”

  • “An incredibly valuable tool in the toolbox for enabling groups of parents to work collaboratively towards solutions that work for them in their real world situations.”

  • “Gave me lots of ideas on how to work effectively with parents. I liked the emphasis on strengths based approach. Parents Plus is a very valuable and practical tool for work with parents”

  • The materials used in the delivery of the Parents Plus course are very user friendly and relevant. Parents I have worked with have found the DVD, which has real parents and children, as relevant to their own situation.”

  • “We have observed first hand the success of the programme for parents and how much they have enjoyed and benefitted from the experience. Many of the parents have attended many parenting programmes!…and all of them felt Parents Plus was different and they have learnt so much more. A lot of our parents are keen to attend due to other parents telling them of how it changed their lives.”

  • “The Parents Plus programme manuals are well detailed and include excellent DVD clips which support the programme materials.”


  • “Very useful and strengths based…“Absolutely essential for anyone working with parents in groups or on an individual basis”

  • “The Parents Plus course has been evaluated and validated in its own right. The pre and post testing with follow up provides the facilitators with confidence to know that they are delivering a well researched programme, which has proven positive outcomes for parents.”

  • “The Parents Plus Children’s Programme theoretical framework is strong, has support for being effective with this population and is directly linked to the content and expected outcomes. The targeted outcomes are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Reduced parental stress, child behaviour problems, and children’s hyperactivity have been shown through randomised control trials conducted by the developer.”

  • “The Parents Plus Programme is as good as the best international programmes I have seen and outstanding because it has been developed collaboratively with parents and families in Ireland”


  • ‘The strength of the book lies in it accessible style and numerous practical suggestions.’

  • ‘…a guide for parents, a book long overdue and one which will be of enormous help.’

  • ‘Clearly and authoritatively written by two experts in the area, clinician’s who work with depressed children and adolescents should routinely recommend that parents read this excellent book’.

  • ‘Found this book really useful. Good selection of case studies and practical suggestions. Parents and carers, as well as front line practitioners will find this book a starting point to understand self harm’

  • ‘One major strength of JohnSharry’s approach is how he demonstrates how parents can reframe potential conflict situations as opportunities for closer involvement and richer family interactions. A very readable, common-sense user friendly booklet’.

  • ‘A good guide for this tricky stage’

  • ‘An indispensible guide’

  • ‘A persuasive alternative to traditional methods of group practice…
    obviously written from a real practitioner who understands the process and elements of group work.’

  • ‘Embraces the much deeper philosophical aspects of solution focused work that are relevant for every human group. … Sharry writes extremely well and skillfully interweaves theory and practice.’

  • ‘Enlightening, clearly written, and helpfully presented … The book echoes
    what Solution-Focused Groupwork is all about – being practical and
    optimistic about human potential.’

  • ‘This slim tautly written volume disguises an enormous practical treasure store to help group facilitators. Solution Focused Groupwork should be essential reading.’

  • ‘John Sharry has fluency with language that allows complexity to sit side by side with clarity and ideas to flow across the page. This is a book that must be read by
    anyone interested in front line developments in solution-focused therapy.’

  • ‘Solution-Focused Groupwork picks up where Irvin Yalom’s classic ‘Theory and
    Practice of Group Psychotherapy’ left off. In a thoughtful, step-by-step, and easy-to- read fashion, John Sharry integrates the best from established principles of group therapy with recent advances in brief, strength-based, resiliency-oriented treatment approaches. A must read for practitioners working with groups.’

  • ‘A major contribution to the literature on groupwork.’

  • ‘The case studies are illuminating. The ideas and theories are set out in clear, readable progression. It should change practice. Wonderful.’

  • ‘This is a valuable book, worth attention in every child and family service …
    I recommend this book to anyone who lives or works with families, children
    or teenagers.’

  • ‘Sharry has produced a rich resource from which the reader can consider the  ideas, reflect upon them and integrate them into his/her own practice.’

  • John Sharry’s book is a jewel in the solution focused literature. It is clearly and engagingly written, draws on a host of ideas from different therapeutic approaches and is packed with practical examples. There is no better book on strengths-based therapy with children and adolescents. Every team should have one.’

  • ‘In a clear, engaging, and step-by-step fashion, John Sharry describes how therapists, social workers, and helpers of all stripes, can tap into the many assets and abilities lying in wait in today’s youth. I highly recommend it.’

  • ‘Novices will love this book for its simplicity and straightforwardness. Experienced people will relish the humor and the helpful teaching guides.’

  • ‘Brilliant … well written … crisp and tothe point.’

  • ‘One of the best solution focused practice oriented books on the market.’

  • ‘Will help both beginners and advanced students of solution-based therapies
    master the approach. The perceptive reader will discover many advanced
    concepts presented clearly and simply.’

  • ‘It’s not easy to write a good hands-on book about solution focused brief therapy which is exactly what the authors have managed to do. You will enjoy reading this book very much. It gives you enough ideas about the approach that you can start testing them in your work with clients right away.’

  • ‘This book is excellent, and will inspire both parents who are in trouble and also families who are getting along fine but know there are areas they could improve.’

  • Light of touch, inviting to the (surely busy and distracted) readers, and decorated with amusing cartoons that add ideas … A good gift for young parents facing the challenge of those vital years’


  • “Excellent,very interesting,very relaxed,very informative, really beneficial, will be extremely useful to me in my role, very knowledgeable, has given me a lot to be a more positive manager, gave me a new perspective on how to handle staff issues. knowledgeable and professional, fun, excellent presentations, sense of humour.”

  • “Superb, Trainer is an excellent lecturer and kept me interested throughout. Highly recommend for all (my) staff.Delivered with great clarity and enthusiasm Excellent delivery, extremely interesting, definitely beneficial to my work practice. My expectations were more than met.Energy and knowledge has consistent high standard throughout the day”

  • “Delivery Fantastic, Trainer clearly experienced in and passionate about working with Parents, making his teaching clear, inspiring and motivating…Style and balance brilliant Style was relaxed with good injection of humour which helped group work well. Shifting ideas from problem focus to solution focus will be invaluable to me in my work Feel enthused about work again”

  • “Trainer was extremely knowledge and gave plenty of opportunity for questions and discussions…Added humour to the course, personal experiences…Used a lot of personal experience which made it more relevant. Also with relaxed atmosphere, which made it easier to learn, very knowledgeable”

  • “Parents Plus trainer was very effective, humourous, knowledgeable and very good at involving everyone in the group…Questions were answered with full information and context…Made to feel relaxed and encouraged to participate, give views..Excellent Delivery”

  • “Use of humour, real world examples, depth of experience were excellent Trainer was very practical. Relevant and informative”

  • “The Parents Plus training was just great; the programme itself is well structured and Parentss Plus Ttrainer made the training fun and he was very supportive”.

  • “The Parents Plus facilitator training was invaluable and a very positive experience. Staff felt a huge benefit from the training particularly on how to facilitate groups As a result of training I have observed changes in staff practices – they are more solution focused in their approach and more skilled at actually facilitating and able to get parents to help themselves more effectively. I believe training is essential in order to deliver effectively.”


  • “I’m mum to one fabulous, fun, energetic and exhausting girl who’s turning five next week (Don’t know where that time has gone). Long journey to parenthood for us and we don’t take it for granted. We’re far from perfect but try our best everyday. Some days are wonderful – others not so much. I took the leap and signed up to a Parents Plus parenting course. The support, encouragement and skills shared and learned were so much more than I’d expected. For any parents out there who are struggling or want to do better, I’d encourage you to make the time to find a local resource that are there to help. Invest in your relationship with your child – you’ll both benefit.”

  • “I used to shout and nit pick daily. That’s all stopped now thanks to the course and excellent instructors and the open and honest environment created in the course”.


  • “Well, I knew I needed a parenting course and at first I was very anxious going in on my own because  I’m a widow with three young children and I’m …but the support was absolutely wonderful…”

  • “I found it very hard to come along to the parents’ class because I thought nobody was going to have a child like my child. It was absolutely great being able to say well my child has this bad behaviour and he wasn’t the only one with bad behaviour. Other children had done exactly same thing. As parents we benefited greatly from the clinic, we got a lot of emotions out – laughed, cried, and joked. It was time out.”

  • “I found the Parents Plus group absolutely helped us as parents and it also definitely helped David. When we first came along to the group I honestly didn’t think that anybody could help us whatsoever. Because he was violent towards everybody, he was violent towards me and he’s called me all names under the sun but ever since I’ve done the sessions I’m a lot happier and I know David is a lot happier. He’s a lot calmer, he doesn’t harm his sister anymore, his sister is happier, his mother is happier. As Tina was saying, the house is just a lot calmer and he’s actually fun to be around now.”

  • “One of the key things that the Parents Plus course has given me is a sense of hope and a sense of understanding that there are other people in similar situations and I think that is very important for a parent because you do feel very lonely in the world that you have to deal with a child with these certain difficulties that other children and other parents don’t seem to experience so just that idea of meeting people who have gone through the same experiences and are dealing with the same problems as you are on a day to day basis as you are gives you an awful lot of strength and a lot of confidence to go on with your life and building that relationship with your child.”

  • “I found doing the Parents Plus course really very helpful, I must say I went in thinking ‘Everybody will think I’m here that I have a problem with parenting’ but I soon realised that the people coming were the people that were already good parents and that wanted to do the best for their children, who wanted to do a very important job even better. It really did help my life considerably and helped the way that we related to each other as a family.”

  • “Well it was an experience for me to understand my son Anthony more than I used to before I went to the Parents Plus course as in not to think that he was just being bold or being a bully, but more to understand the pressures that he is under and what it is like to be out there today with friends and peer pressure and every thing else”

  • “I think the Parents Plus course was fantastic, you know I was lost before, I was really lost before I  went into it, and then each time I went to the course, each day coming out of it I just felt more confident, you gave me the tools to do the things right, and the exercises at home. I just couldn’t  wait to get back to do more because I knew by the end of the week I was kind of losing it again, you know. Everything you taught us to do we did at home and put into practice and they’ve really worked.”

  • “Really positive – I was very unsure about going to the Parents Plus group, I thought people were going to criticize me, but the course gave me the tools I needed in a friendly way…I just need to remember to press the pause button!”

  • “Overall the Parents Plus course was really helpful and I’m so glad I did it, and, if my experience or any of my feelings can help anybody else, then it’s well worth it. There was a group of us, mothers and fathers, everyone of us had one or two children but we all had the common problem that we couldn’t  manage our children. Today to be able to manage my children and feel that I am a good mother is worth everything to me and I think that the children have reaped the benefit of it too.”

  • “I think that when we started on the Parents Plus course I thought maybe it would be, ‘this is what you’re doing wrong, that’s what you’re doing wrong,’ instead of that I found that it emphasised the positive aspects. We all felt that we were good parents that were doing a lot of things right.”