Home visiting services help mothers, children through tough first two years

Home visiting services help mothers, children through tough first two years

Nurse- Family Partnership, Parents as Teachers teaming up to help first- time mothers

ralphhardin@gmail.com Being a first-time mother can be a challenging and frightening time, even before the baby arrives and for those critical first years raising a child.

August Rose, Program Administrator for a Home Visiting Program here in Crittenden county called Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP), and Brandy Ivy, the Coordinator of another local Home Visiting Program called Parents as Teachers (PAT), have been working on forming partnerships with local organizations in order to create sustainable referral sources. “We have presented at several of the local Junior High and High schools in- cluding East, Wonder, Marion Middle School and Marion High school,” said Rose. “We also presented at the Rotary Club meeting this past Monday. Marion schools have been wonderful partners and we have many students who have enrolled in our program and received the support they needed in order to stay in school and obtain their high school diplomas.”

The two home visiting programs provide education and support to mothers.

NFP enrolls first-time mothers and follows them until the child turns 2 years of age. This prenatal mom is linked with a registered nurse who visits her in her home. Her nurse provides her with education and the support she needs to meet life goals such as finishing high school, enrolling in college or finding a job.

NFP has two Nurse Home Visitors located in the Crittenden County Health Department who are ready to enroll families. They are able to serve 50 families and currently have openings.

PAT enrolls women who are pregnant or have a child under the age of 2. These families are seen until the child turns 3 years of age.

PAT families are linked with a Home Visitor who educates the parents on how to interact with their child and get them ready for school. PAT has three Home Visitors located at ASU-Mid South who are ready to enroll families.

They can serve up to 60 families and currently have openings.

Both programs are free to families here in Crittenden County. These programs are funded by federal grant money and work to improve pregnancy outcomes, improve child health & development and improve the economic self-sufficiency of the family.

“Both programs are free and available to women in our community and we would love to create more awareness in order to reach more families,” said Ivy.

If you know someone who is interested in enrolling please contact August Rose, NFP Program Administrator at 501-7728370 or Brandy Ivy, PAT Coordinator at 870-733-

6027.

By Ralph Hardin

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