As households get smaller, and society becomes more and more disconnected, we need to actively cultivate close relationships. These strong social bonds help shield us from stress, which in turn makes us healthier both emotionally and physically. Creating a “village” for ourselves and our children is one of the most important things we can do for both our, and their, future mental health and wellbeing.

I needed a village

When my dearly loved sister in law passed away in September 2000, I knew I needed to create a village around my brother. I watched as he fell apart before my eyes trying to care for his 6-year-old son, and so stepped in to help raise my nephew.


I realised it was vital that my nephew be embedded in a strong network of friends, relatives and neighbours who could help him experience joy, develop his strengths, form friendships, learn new skills and be loved and supported through this incredibly difficult time. Fostering his bond with the adults in his village – aunts, uncles, grandparents, my close adult friends, sports coaches, teachers and mentors, allowed me to embed my nephew in a rich community of relationships that helped him thrive and handle the curve balls life was throwing his way.

Being part of a village

When I sat down and really thought about my priorities as I helped raise my nephew I recognised that I needed to model the habits, skills and mindsets that foster resilience, happiness and mental fitness, so that he could then continue to use these in his adolescence and beyond. I wanted him to be able to thrive and successfully handle whatever challenges life presented him. I needed other adults to model these things for him as well, as I knew I couldn’t do it on my own.


I developed different tools and strategies I could use, both with him and with the families and children I was working with at the time, to embed these habits and mindsets in our daily lives. I have continued this throughout my career and now want to share that with other parents and caring adults who are an integral part of a child’s village.

That’s Why I created Villagers


Parenting without a village can lead to us feeling overwhelmed, anxious and inadequate. Villagers is a place to come together as a community where we can enjoy rich, safe, authentic connections and share the struggles, worries and joys of everyday life trying to raise resilient kids. 

Do you need a village?

I want to make instilling the habits, tools and mindsets a priority as we are losing too many children and young people to the rising epidemic of anxiety, depression and suicide.


After working with over 25,000 children and families in the past two decades, and undertaking many years of research, I know that our kids develop habitual ways of behaving feeling and thinking constructed from what they observe us doing as well as what we actively teach them.


I know that sometimes it is easy to get busy with the rush of day to day activities when we are racing to get everything done. However, I want to make this a priority and start actively embedding these practices into our daily lives. Our children and young people desperately need these habits and tools.

This is how I’m going to do it

You’re about to become a Villager.


Villagers is a monthly email newsletter subscription that you can sign up to/connect with or leave at any time. Your monthly Villagers email provides you with activities, tools and strategies as well as invitations to the following:

Ready to become a Villager?

If Villagers sounds like a community that you might get some value from, please come and join us.

Join now by clicking on the link below. Villagers is just $9.99 a month.

Like to know more?

If you would like to know about Villagers before you join, or if you just want to get in touch with Kari, please fill out the contact form below and Kari will get back to you.

About Kari

I am a researcher, educator, author and speaker who has helped over 25,000 parents, educators and other people who care for kids develop the skills and confidence to promote mental fitness habits in both their homes, schools, early childhood facilities and workplaces. I have been a teacher, Deputy Principal, Guidance Counsellor and Consultant for families for over 30 years.

I have dedicated my complete career to supporting people who care for, and work with, children. Anxiety and depression among children and adolescents are on the rise both in Australia and around the world. I help parents, grandparents, carers, early childhood educators and teachers plant the seeds of mental fitness, resilience and emotional wellbeing for future generations.