Home-based services provide early childhood education in conjunction with parent education via a home visiting service delivery model. Based on an assessment of each family’s needs, strengths, and challenges, an individualized service plan is developed to identify the appropriate activities and support that will be most helpful for the child’s healthy development. Home visits can occur on a weekly or monthly basis depending on each family’s needs.
Early Start’s home-based services are offered to the child and parent or primary caregiver through one-hour sessions, and most children are enrolled for one or two sessions each week. The program offers exceptional early education, parent education and therapeutic interventions, including occupational, speech and physical therapies, in the family’s home.
“As a parent, we believe that most things are possible and are so grateful that the staff at ECF also believe this.”
– Angelica, a Mom
Home visits are highly individualized but may include language enhancement, feeding therapy, tummy time activities, exercises to strengthen weak muscles, and sensory activities including finger painting and story time. Through these play and therapeutic learning activities, Early Start educators and therapists guide each child to develop fine motor, gross motor, self-help, cognitive, speech and language, and personal social skills – all contributing to each child’s healthy and age appropriate development.
Medical assessment and access services are also part of Early Start’s home-based services. Through screenings, a medical director identifies children in need of medical services and provides service coordination between families, physicians, therapists and other specialists to ensure access to needed treatments and therapies. Services are provided to families with children who are challenged with feeding issues, feeding tube management, behavioral problems, motor control and pulmonary, cardiovascular and neurological issues. The medical director works closely with families to help them understand their children’s complex medical conditions and supports them in developing advocacy skills to navigate medical services and systems.