The Northern Windsor and Orange County BBF council spent some time looking at data, sharing stories and determining where there is momentum in the region around specific early childhood issues. In doing this we noted that the benefits cliff that families experience has continued to be a challenge in accessing resources, we also learned that there are many vacant positions in early care settings that are going unfilled and impacting the number of child care slots a program is able to offer. We reflected on some of our successes from the year and determined our priorities for this upcoming year. Those priorities are as follows:
- Professionals have knowledge and resources regarding children’s social and emotional health (focus on community screenings of documentaries, Early MTSS)
- Increase awareness of early childhood positions available and training options to support workforce recruitment and retention (especially filling open job postings)
- Professionals have access to and participate in the Developmental Screening Registry
- Families and providers are aware of the benefits of participating in WIC
Another exciting development in the region is that the Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center through their needs assessment identified strengthening families as a community need and has created a workgroup to address this. The group has a vision: That families have the skills and resources to have joy and support for each member that encourages growth and resilience. While this group is still in its infancy we are excited to participate in it and see where the work leads.