A Place for Natural Connections

Our Mission

A Place for Natural Connections (APNC) promotes the positive benefits of the daily task of combing hair as an opportunity for parents to connect with their children, culture, and community. With humor and sensitivity, the goal of all programs is acceptance of their child regardless of their skin color or hair type. APNC programs provide culturally centered parent groups.

Talk, Touch & Listen Parent Café

The Café is designed to engage parents with humor and meaningful conversations on the traumatic origins in slavery of practices of acceptance or rejection of young children based on their skin color and valuing ‘good hair’

Talk, Touch & Listen While Combing Hair© Parent Group

This low-cost, community-based parent group uses is based on pre and post videotaped parent-child interactions during the hair-combing task as a central focus for strengthening parenting behaviors. Experiential exercises, micro-lectures, and participatory exercises with heavy doses of humor define the curriculum. Parent-peers provide feedback on the parent’s strengths shown in the videotaped hair combing interaction.

Miranda’s Green Hair Puppet Show©

The lively, interactive musical, puppet show that immediately follows the Café, teaches parents and children to recognize the emotions of a little girl of color who doesn’t want to get her curly green hair combed.

Multi-Site Research Collaboration

A Place for Natural Connections (APNC) has established nation-wide collaborations with researchers and institutions interested in replicating these programs and conducting research on APNC programs. These collaborators include, Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; the Merrill-Palmer Skillman Institute and the School of Social Work at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan; San Diego State University; and Southern University at New Orleans, Louisiana.