Every parent of a newborn knows that with a new baby comes a multitude of new questions. Babies don’t come with an instruction manual and having questions is completely normal. Providing better support to ALL new parents isn’t just needed. It’s essential to building stronger families in Colorado.
That’s where Family Connects Colorado comes in.
Family Connects is an evidence-based model and successfully demonstrated program that connects parents of newborns to the community resources they need through postpartum nurse home visits. The service is simple: A registered nurse visits the home around 3 weeks after birth to check on parent, baby, and the whole family. There is no additional cost to the family, and anyone with a newborn can participate, including foster, adoptive, kinship, immigrant, and refugee parents.
Each family with a newborn has unique needs — Family Connects Colorado helps families identify the resources in their community and access services that fit with their individual needs and preferences.
Help for Baby
- Baby weight check
- Safe sleep information
- Infant feeding and fussiness
- Help with bathing, diapering, and swaddling
Help for Birth Parent
- Birth parent’s health check
- Breastfeeding support
- Family planning advice
- Postpartum depression screening
Help for Family
- Scheduling doctor’s appointments
- Understanding child care options
- Early literacy information
- Community connections
Launching Family Connects in Colorado
As the State Intermediary for Family Connects in Colorado, Illuminate is facilitating the implementation of the evidence-based model to ensure effective scaling and sustainability of Family Connects in Colorado. This work is being done in collaboration with Family Connects International and local partners across the state.
The launch of the program in Eagle and Boulder Counties this past month is an exciting milestone for the program, and expansion will continue with both Denver and Jefferson counties starting implementation in the spring of 2023.
To celebrate the launch of the program in Colorado and share more about the program with key stakeholders across the state, Illuminate hosted a luncheon on October 21st. The vision and passion that was shared for this program on national, state, and local levels highlighted the immense impact this program can have on all families.
Impacting ALL Families in Colorado
The evidence-based Family Connects model was developed and piloted in Durham, NC through a partnership with Duke University’s Center for Child & Family Policy (CCFP), the nonprofit Center for Child & Family Health (CCFH), and the Durham County Health Department. Results from an ongoing randomized controlled trial included:
- 50% fewer emergency room visits and hospital stays for infants
- 28% less reported anxiety by mothers
- More positive parenting behaviors
- Improved home environments and home safety
- Increased community connections
- Higher quality child care choices
As Illuminate continues to expand Family Connects across the state, the excitement for the potential impact continues to grow as well.
We know that all families need support and that every parent has unique needs. Through Family Connects Colorado, we can begin to address those needs so that every parent has access to what they need to keep their family strong and their children healthy.
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