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Lewis and Clark County’s Local Best Beginnings Community Council GOALS 1. Children have access to high quality Early Childhood Programs 2. Families with.

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Presentation on theme: "Lewis and Clark County’s Local Best Beginnings Community Council GOALS 1. Children have access to high quality Early Childhood Programs 2. Families with."— Presentation transcript:

1 Lewis and Clark County’s Local Best Beginnings Community Council GOALS 1. Children have access to high quality Early Childhood Programs 2. Families with young children are supported in their community 3. Children have access to a medical home and health insurance 4. Social, emotional, and mental health needs of young children and families are supported.

2 “Investing In The Very Young”

3 Mission With the focus on the whole child, we promote community collaboration to network resources and streamline services in support of the health, safety, care and education of children ages 0-8 and their families in the greater Helena area.

4 Vision Safe, stable, nurturing relationships lead to resilient children, strong families, and stable communities

5 ECC Functions Network within Coalition membership Raise community awareness Streamline services Identify and improve existing system barriers Advocate for children 0-8 and their families

6 Early Childhood Community Needs Assessment & Strategic Plan Funded by the Maternal Infant Home Visiting Infrastructure Development (MIECHV-ID) Project

7 Needs Assessment Results Working Families, Barely Getting By 11% of the population in Lewis & Clark County is children ages 0-8 At least 28% of families with children in Lewis & Clark County are likely to face permanent or periodic financial insecurity 18% of those families are considered above the poverty level, but remain financially insecure and do not qualify for many of the services designed to assist families in need…..otherwise known as “GAP” families. An estimated 53% of single, female-headed households face this insecurity. In Lewis & Clark County, 69% of families with children 0-5 and 81% with children 6-17 have all adults in the household participating in the workforce. For a family of four, the FPL for 2012 for a family of four is $23,050. Annual income of $42,643 is equal to 185% of FPL

8 Needs Assessment Results In order qualify for free or reduced school lunch, a student’s family must make less than 185% of the FPL In the Helena School District 39.7% of children preschool through 5th grade qualified for free or reduced lunches in 2011/2012. In the East Helena Public Schools, Eastgate (K-1) had 50.7% and Radley (2-5) had 49% participation in free or reduced lunch in spring 2012.

9 Some Needs Assessment Results FAMILY SUPPORT NEEDS Parenting Support Increased access to resources Link families to “fun” activities SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND MENTAL HEALTH NEEDS Attachment Behavior Challenges HEALTH NEEDS Better Nutrition Rising obesity level Clear, consistent messaging and access to tools to promote positive health practices in the community

10 Taking ACTION to address needs thanks to the “Family Forum” Project Funding provided by partnership grants from: Child & Family Services Division, Early Childhood Services Bureau, Family & Community Health Bureau, and the Prevention Resource Center

11 Family….Food…Friends….Fun Event GOALS: Parenting Support Fun Activity Improve social/emotional development & attachment/bonding Improve nutrition Provide tools Link families with up-to-date information about nutrition Teach affordability & health benefits of cooking at home


13 Slow Cookers, spices, books, Frisbees, swim passes, water bottles

14 Helena Trolley Picking up Families at Stewart homes

15 The kids were up bright and early to get on at 8 in the morning on a Saturday

16 “Yeah! Gym Games!!”

17 Trolley Dropped kids at the Y, then took parents to Dinners Done Right

18 Child care room at YMCA

19 Marah Connole, RD, teaching parents about Ellyn Satter’s Division of Responsibility and discussing relationships around family and food

20 Satter’s Feeding Relationship Effective feeding depends on a division of responsibility. Parents do the what, when, and where of feeding; Children do the how much and whether of eating. Feeding a child – Is about the connections between parent and child, – About trusting or controlling – About providing or neglecting – About accepting or rejecting

21 Families make 6 meals to take home. Marah gave individual consults while participants assembled meals.

22 Our youngest chef!

23 Vikki, the owner of DDR, (in background) was very helpful and open to more cooking activities in her store



26 Offered a salad bar for lunch


28 Parents joined kids back at the Y to help them with lunch

29 Kids happily played games all morning and were HUNGRY for lunch!






35 Community Collaboration Partners Helena Housing YMCA City of Helena Public Transportation Early Childhood Coalition Members Dinner’s Done Right Dietician DPHHS

36 What worked well? Group cooking Special kid activity paired with adult activity increased participation (reported by parents) Went door to door at Stewart Homes signing people up for activity Ellyn Satter information (Division of Responsibility)-Most parents had never received this information Dinner’s Done Right takes SNAP benefits! And is Family Friendly

37 What we would do different? Families wanted to cook with their kids Kitchen at Dinner’s Done Right was loud, hard to have a good discussion Some people already had slow cookers Variety of days/times Plan for next activity and sign up families while they are with the group

38 Sustainability Helena Housing Authority wants to continue to offer opportunities to build relationships for families, especially single mothers experiencing the most isolation, poverty, and distress. Early stages of planning the next cooking event to include kids. Beginning Cooking Matters Classes locally.

39 RESOURCES Dinner’s Done Right takes SNAP HUD provides some on-site community building funding (Resident-Management Corp.) SNAP-ED classes Cooking Matters Classes Local Best Beginnings councils may have funds to help with groups

40 Contact Information Brie Oliver, RN, CLC Lewis and Clark City-County Health Department 1930 9 th Avenue Helena, MT 59601 (406) 457-8975

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