SERVICES TO EXPECTANT MOTHERS
Expectant mothers receive individualized and coordinated services from staff to prepare for their parenting role, and learn about proper nutrition and exercise during pregnancy. They are also assisted in obtaining prenatal care, and in planning for after the baby arrives, including advancing their education or securing employment. Participants receive services from beginning to end of their pregnancy, and their infants can enter into one of the child service components (center-based or home-based).
SERVICES TO CHILDREN
This component includes center-based care and education for the children, parental involvement and leadership opportunities and community focused partnership development and capacity building. The Early Head Start Family Learning Centers serve designated communities and provide full day, full year educational services to children up to 36 months of age and support and education services to their families.
In order to provide individualized and developmentally appropriate care and education the teacher-child ratio is small. One teacher is assigned to four children and there are only eight children in each classroom. The teachers make three home visits a year and schedule three formal Parent/Teacher conferences during the year to discuss the child’s progress and to mutually agree to the educational goals and objectives for each child’s education plan.
The health and well-being of a child is an important factor influencing the cognitive developmental domain. Early Head Start monitors the health of the child, helps with access to health care, and provides information to families on child and adult health topics.
C4NC believes parents are the most important teacher in their children’s lives, and the parents support and engage in the education of their children through in-the-home-activities and the Parent Committees. The parents and community residents also volunteer in the classroom and at other center related events.
Family Service Workers are assigned to each Family Learning Center and provide support, assistance, resource information, and motivation to each family. Together the Family Service Worker and the family develop a plan of action with strategies to reach family determined goals.
Parents who are working, in school, or in a job training program are given priority to enroll in the center-based component.
This component includes 90 minute weekly visits in the home and twice monthly group gatherings commonly referred to as Socializations. Family Educator are assigned no more than 12 families each.
In the Home-based component the focus is on strengthening the parental role in the care and education of their children. The Family Educator provides child development information, parenting skills development, child health information, and community resources to address family needs. Parents learn the importance of reading to their children, the value of play, and the benefits of talking and conversing with their children.
Socialization gatherings provide an opportunity for families to reduce their isolation, to build a social support network, and to learn from other parents and children.
Home-based families receive the same health-related services and they also partner with a Family Service Worker to develop a plan of action with strategies to reach family determined goals.