Early childhood home visiting and parenting education programs strengthen the relationship between parents and children by increasing parenting skills and building confidence. Early childhood home visiting is one powerful way that parenting education is delivered. These programs are important resources for ensuring healthy child development, reducing the risk of abuse and neglect, and promoting strong families.

That’s why we are excited to share with you that Governor Cooper has announced February is Parenting Education Awareness Month in North Carolina.

Parenting Education Awareness Month recognizes the power of parenting education and early childhood home visiting to strengthen families and keep kids safe. Expanding access to home visiting and parenting education programs is a critical way to support the health and well-being of children and families across the state.

Background

Early childhood home visiting and parenting education (HVPE) programs strengthen the relationship between parents and children, increasing parenting skills and building confidence. By supporting families, these programs ensure children are ready to learn, improve child health and keep children safe. Providing access to home visiting and parenting education to all North Carolina families would extend these benefits across the state. That’s why we need #HVPE4All.

  • According to a landscape analysis conducted by the Jordan Institute for Families, there are 358,000 infants and toddlers in NC who could benefit from home visiting, but current programs serve less than 1% of all children in the state.
  • There is an acute shortage of home visiting programs in NC. Many communities have no programs at all, and 72% of existing programs have a waiting list for services.
  • As much as $5.70 is saved for every $1 invested in home visiting. These programs save NC money on expensive social problems such as child abuse, poor academic performance, unemployment, poverty, and crime.
  • Home visiting also saves money in long term health care costs, while also improving prenatal health and birth outcomes child health outcomes by increasing immunization rates, decreasing ER visits, and decreasing rates of abuse and neglect.

Home Visiting & Parenting Education Programs Funded by Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Smart Start is committed to bringing these evidenced based practices to our community; we provide support to these local agencies to implement proven models:

  1. Nurse-Family Partnership
    A well-studied, Intensive nurse home-visitingmodel designed to improve birth outcomes, child development and self-sufficiency of low-income, first-time parents. Mothers receive home visits from registered nurses beginning prior to the 28th week of pregnancy until the child is two years of age.
  2. Safe Journey Parents as Teachers
    Provides case management and educational support using the evidence-based Parents as Teachers (PAT) curriculum for adolescent parents. Services include: group meetings, home visits, leadership training, high quality child care and referrals to community resources.
  3. The Learning Collaborative
    Serves preschool children from at-risk families through a 5 star, tuition-free program with literacy-rich activities that address their educational and social needs. A Family Support Specialist builds and nurtures relationships with parents to lay the foundation for on-going involvement in their child’s education, using the Triple P parenting education model.
  4. YMCA Parents as Teachers
    Provides case management and educational support using the evidence-based Parents as Teachers (PAT) curriculum for parents. Services include: group meetings, home visits, leadership training, high quality child care and referrals to community resources.

Other Resources