Save Home Visiting
The early childhood community celebrates a huge win in the Arizona state budget! The final version of the budget invests $10 million dollars to fill the funding gap and expand the Healthy Families Arizona (HFAz) home visiting program. HFAz is designed to help expectant and new parents get their children off to a healthy start. Program services are designed to strengthen families during the critical first years of a child’s life – the time when early brain development occurs, laying the foundation for a lifetime of memories, behaviors, and outcomes. Through its efforts to support and educate families, the program has shown to reduce incidences of child abuse and neglect, provide stability for at-risk families and has grown a new generation of healthy families in the state.1 Back in 2009, monies supporting HFAz were cut from the state general fund and have not been replaced since. We are thrilled to see that Arizona legislators recognize the essential value HFAz provides for Arizona families and applaud the new $10 million dollar investment.
Now that we have secured this investment in home visiting for Arizona children, the next step is to advocate on behalf of children in every state! We are less than 100 days out from the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (MIECHV) reauthorization deadline. The MIECHV Program supports families with the tools and resources they need to thrive. This program is bi-partisan and evidence based and builds upon decades of scientific research showing that home visits by a nurse, social worker, early childhood educator, or other early childhood professional during pregnancy and early childhood significantly improves life outcomes of children and families. Congress has a lot on their plates, but we want to make sure that MIECHV reauthorization is top of mind as we approach the expiration of the current funding on September 30th. We are asking early childhood advocates and stakeholders to do two things.
First, contact your members of Congress by clicking HERE and then please use this 100 Days Social Media Tool Kit to create a sense of urgency on Capitol Hill. Now is the time to rally together and let our Senators and Representatives know that it’s time to take action on MIECHV!