Just a few hours ago we learned that we closed the deal on the highly competitive portion of a new home visiting grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services. We’re one of 9 states that’ll be awarded the competitive portion of the grant. We’ll receive $9.4M a year for four years for a total of more than $36M to implement a maternal, infant, and early childhood home visiting program where nurses, social workers, or other professionals will meet with at-risk families in their homes and evaluate their circumstances, and connect them to the kinds of help that can make a real difference in a child’s health, development, and ability to learn – such as health care, developmental services for children, early education, parenting skills, child abuse prevention, and nutrition education or assistance.
This was a collaborative effort between us, First Things First, ADES and the AZ Department of Education- but our very own Mary Ellen Cunningham spearheaded the effort. We’ll be using our 2010 MCH Needs Assessment as a road map as we use evidence based practices to implement this great opportunity. This is both a recognition of the work to date and a unique chance to catapult all of the family support work going on throughout the state to the next level.