Posted by Sue Green, Healthy Families Program Director

Healthy Families West Suburban, a program of the JF&CS Center for Early Relationship Support, was awarded the Children’s Trust Fund Healthy Families grant to continue serving the west suburban area. With this new grant the program has expanded to include the towns of Cambridge and Somerville.

Healthy Families is a statewide, strengthbased, voluntary home visiting program that serves first time pregnant or parenting mothers and fathers who are under the age of 21 when first enrolled. The goals of Healthy Families are to reduce child abuse and neglect, improve educational and economic outcomes for parents, improve health outcomes for children, reduce unplanned pregnancies, and promote optimal parental health and wellness. Home visitors work with families prenatally up to the child’s third birthday to promote health, selfempowerment, and wellbeing by creating a trusting, strength-based relationship with a home visitor that allows the participants to develop to their fullest potential. Service delivery includes goal setting, child development activities and education, child development assessment, groups, use of curriculum, and assistance in accessing community programs and services. Beginning in FY11, two new home visitors will be hired to serve the Cambridge/Somerville area.