Support and Prevention Keep Families Safe – and Together

Angela Stewart, Supervisor of Healthy Families America Wayne Family First Prevention Service Act Program for Wayne County

Thanks to Healthy Families America Wayne and the expansion to include the Family First Prevention Service Act in 2021, more families can get support with parenting and other resources. And that has shown to reduce child abuse and neglect. As April is Child Abuse Awareness Month, we are detailing the Healthy Families America Wayne FFPSA program for Wayne County residents.

Through their traditional Healthy Families America Wayne program, families are encouraged to enroll during the prenatal period and up to when a child is 3 months of age.  Now through the Family First Prevention Service Act expansion, children are referred directly through child welfare, and they can be enrolled in the program up to 24 months of age.

The program is offered to families for up to 3 years and during that time the family receives parent education, guidance, and support in a variety of ways through an evidence-based program:

  • Home visits
  • Resources for housing, food, and other needs
  • Crisis management
  • Activities for parent and child to engender bonding and growth
  • Stress and coping skills
  • Emotional and social support
  • Support with goal planning
  • Individualized service plan

“Often as a new parent it can be overwhelming”, says Angela Stewart, Supervisor of Healthy Families America Wayne Family First Prevention Service Act Program for Wayne County. “When parents are facing multiple crisis trying to make it through a day, it’s hard to parent when you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed which will impact your ability to parent your children.”

Children are assessed for developmental milestones and early intervention is provided when needed.  The family is also screened for domestic violence, mental illness, and substance abuse. If needed, they are referred to professional services.The traditional Healthy Families America Wayne program has a high graduation rate.“It is so rewarding, to see how the program works to keep families together,” Stewart said. “At graduation, we can see how parents have grown, barriers have been reduced and the growth of the parent-child relationship. Many of the stressors have been decreased or eliminated through the support we have been able to provide.”Angela Stewart had previously worked at Spaulding for Children for 14 years. She worked in the prevention program for over 13 years.For more information, contact Healthy Families America Wayne at (313) 537-1708.