Early Head Start Provides Healthy Beginnings for Children

 In Partnerships for Early Learners
Photo by Abigail Batchelder

Photo by Abigail Batchelder

At the three child care centers participating in Early Learning Indiana’s Early Head Start partnership, children and families are getting more than a high-quality learning experience.

They get free diapers, wipes, formula and a range of positive supports designed to support family success. Through home visits, they can get referrals to critical community supports and adult educational opportunities. Through parent meetings, they get new information about supporting children’s growth. And the busy families get another key support – comprehensive health screenings – to ensure that their infants and toddlers get a healthy start in life.

The Early Head Start team combines forces with several community partners to screen children’s heights and weights, vision, hemoglobin, lead, dental and hearing.

Partners include:

  • Hear Indiana
  • The Lion’s Club’s District 25F Vision Screening Program
  • Marion County Public Health Department’s Lead & Healthy Homes Program
  • Seal Indiana-IU School of Dentistry

Not only are Early Head Start children provided with these screenings, but all children at each partner site have the opportunity to benefit from the health screenings offered by the community partners.

Early Learning Indiana’s Early Head Start staff has also formed a partnership with the McMillen Center for Health Education in Fort Wayne. In partnership with McMillen, Early Learning Indiana secured a $5,700 grant from Delta Dental which will support oral health education to Day Early Learning. The grant supports training and educational materials for each class to assist with curriculum, as well as take-home materials for children. It’s one more tool to ensure that more central Indiana children get a great health foundation in their earliest years.

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