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Early Head Start


 

Early Head Start is designed to provide high quality child and family development services to low-income expectant mothers and families with infants and  toddlers. Services are provided year-round, at no cost, to meet the health, educational, developmental, and social needs of children and families.


 

Our program operates a home-based model where Parent Educators visit families each week for 1 ½ hours, however, visits may vary for expectant parents. We also offer opportunities for parents and children to come together twice per month for Infant/Toddler Playtimes. Services are provided throughout Jefferson and Clarion Counties.


 

HOME VISITS FOCUS ON THE FOLLOWING AREAS OF SCHOOL READINESS:


 

PARENT-CHILD ATTACHMENT

To promote positive parent-child relationships, a Parent Educator might:

Bring helpful information / activities about bonding with your child

Model ways to interact with children-for example; assisting you in reading with your child

Model talking with your child-for example; describing what your child is doing: “You stacked four blocks. Great!”

Assist you in observing your child’s strengths and give you tips for developing them

Connect families with one or more of our Certified Educators of Infant Massage


 

SERVICES TO EXPECTANT MOTHERS & FAMILIES

Parent Educators and our EHS staff can also perform home visits or assist in providing support/transportation to prenatal visits. Services include:

Education on fetal development

Education on nutrition and breastfeeding

Assistance in preparing siblings for baby’s arrival

Assistance in preparing a birthing plan

Education on the effects of smoking, alcohol, and drug use during pregnancy

Assistance in identifying emotional supports and education on postpartum depression and anxiety

Home visit by a licensed nurse within 14 days of birth


 

CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Parent Educators can talk about:

What is typical for a child’s age

What to expect next in your child’s development

Preparing for preschool

Positive discipline strategies

Common childhood issues like sleeping or toilet training


 

CHILD HEALTH AND SAFETY

Parent Educators will provide information about the following:

The importance-of well-baby check-ups, immunizations, and early oral health care

Recognizing a baby’s cues, such as knowing when your baby is hungry

Proper childhood nutrition, including breastfeeding support

Ways to childproof your home


 

PARENT SUPPORT

Parent Educators or other EHS staff may assist parents in setting goals such as:

Job search or education goals

Stress management and coping with problems

Budgeting

Transportation to Playtimes or Medical appointments