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The goal of the Family Advocacy Content Area is to partner with families and the community to help strengthen Head Start families. Family partnership agreements record family strengths, needs, establish objectives and measure progress toward meeting the objectives. Parents are given access to community resources in areas such as emergency assistance, educational opportunities, parenting classes, employment training and counseling.
All members of a household, or any member considered to be an integral part of the family’s development, are included. The Head Start Electronic Information System tracks family referrals and services received.
Head Start recognizes that parents are the first educators of their children. Fathers and other men in the child’s life are encouraged to become involved and to embrace education for the whole family.
Additional Family Services
Family-centered substance abuse prevention
Substance abuse staff provides intervention and referral to substance abuse treatment, and support for affected family members.
Training is provided by staff on such topics as parenting, substance abuse prevention, grandparents raising grandchildren, internet safety, domestic violence, child abuse, stress management, conflict resolution and alcohol/drug abuse.
SECOND STEP early learning program
This program is designed specifically for multiple-age early learning classrooms and is taught through 28 weekly themes, consisting of short activities to be completed throughout the week. The activities build on each other to develop children’s self-regulation skills and social-emotional competence. Last year, 2,687 children and parents participated in the program.
The grant also paid for a bilingual contract parent educator. Last year, he reported 303 participants in 12 locations. The curriculum Survival Skills for Healthy Families is a six-week program that teaches families how to negotiate in family conflict, how to be a leader and model healthy behavior for children, face change, and learn the skills and patterns that consistently show up in healthy families.