Orleans & Northern Essex Regional Council Recap – September 2017

Martha Braithwaite
Orleans & Northern Essex Regional Coordinator
Building Bright Futures




The Northern Windsor and Orange Building Bright Futures (BBF) Council has been busy the past few months better understanding Help Me Grow and Build Our Future from the Child Up initiatives. We have also taken time to start the conversation about how we want to update our Regional Action Plan.

Help Me Grow is a newer initiative to the Northern Windsor Orange region. We took time to better understand all aspects of Help Me Grow including the call center, outreach to providers, family and community outreach, data collection and analysis, and how these will impact our region.

We then dissected what the Council’s role is in this program. We also shared materials that were available to us through the Department of Health. We discussed challenges and opportunities with this initiative and how we can best support it. We talked about ways to gain clarity or get more information. A calendar of annual family events has been created and will continue to be updated. We will use this to determine if there are any events we can support that already exist to spread the Help Me Grow message.

The Northern Windsor and Orange BBF council also took some time to learn about Appreciative Inquiry and the Build Our Future from the Child Up initiative. We performed a group interview at a council meeting and some of the common themes included the importance of an enriching safe environment, truly being child centered, empowering parents, keeping the system simple, ensuring access and making sure there is a high quality, valued workforce available. We recognize that this is something the council can work on in partnership with the state and other local organizations.

The BBF council is also in the process at looking at our Action Plan, prioritizing actions, and transforming it into a Results Based Accountability (RBA) Format. In the process of doing so we are hoping to all learn more about RBA from those in our council that have expertise in the subject. This will not only strengthen our council’s work but also the work within our respective organizations.

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