by Kara Vangarderen
Every parent, regardless of income or education level, deserves support at the critical time when their lives are undergoing dramatic change due to the arrival of a new baby. Healthy Families Clinton offers that support through free, voluntary home visits to families with a pregnant mother or newborn baby, whether or not it is a first child.
Healthy Families Clinton is a program of Behavioral Health Services North, a nonprofit organization that runs 24 public health initiatives in Clinton, Essex, and Franklin Counties. BT3 member Esther Piper has been the Healthy Families program director for five years.
“We are like the one-stop shop for new parents,” Esther explains.
Home visitors listen to parents’ thoughts and needs, help strengthen the parent-child bond, and help parents find time for self-care and their own professional or personal needs. Healthy Families Clinton also helps parents embrace early literacy and school readiness. The program is evidence-based, which means it has been proven to have measurable results.
Esther says she joined BT3 because “we don’t have enough resources in the community.”
“We are not able to reach out to a lot of people, and this program should really help the community and raise funding to get more programs like this in our region.”
Click here to learn more about Behavioral Health Services North and Healthy Families Clinton.