Family and Community Partnerships

Early Head Start and Head Start both have a long history of working with families to meet their needs as the family sees them. This is what makes the program different from daycare or the public school. The Parent Child Center [as the program is known by] has always been a place where families can come for help. The staff is dedicated to listening to a family and helping them to understand what services in the community they may be eligible to receive. This is called the Family Partnership Agreement process and goal setting. At the beginning of the school year the Family Services Coordinators work closely with the family to assist them with Family Strengths, Resources, and Goal Setting. The family receives a Community Resource Handbook that can assist them in meeting any needs that may arise. The Family Services Coordinators are available to work with the family in meeting any needs or desires that they may have.

Community Partnerships are vital to the success of working as a partner between local resource agencies and program families. The management staff, as well as service staff, is committed to forming, strengthening, and maintaining both informal verbal relationships and formal written agreements with local resource service agencies. The important purpose of these community partnerships is to make it easier for families to get the help they may need and are entitled to. Families should always remember that the staff at Head Start/Early Head Start is on their side and will help them get services and resources from local agencies and organizations.

Parents are encouraged to call or contact agencies on their own. This allows them to learn how to do this and to use the information in the future. However, sometimes a family may not know what services they are eligible for or how to get the agency to help them. All the staff is ready and willing to assist a family with information and support services. The Early Head Start Nurturer, Home Base Teacher or Head Start Family Service Coordinators are trained to listen to parents and assist them in the referral process. If a family needs help or assistance, they should always feel free to ask any of the staff questions that will help them to meet their needs.