Grand Opening For Early Steps Family Center
Grand Opening For Early Steps Family
On January 9, community residents and leaders attended the grand opening of the Early Steps Family Center, located at 86-01 Rockaway Beach Boulevard. The facility is part of the Early Head Start (EHS) program, a Visiting Nurse Service (VNS) of New York program that offers pregnant teens and teen families a wide variety of services. EHS center was developed in conjunction with the Department of Health and Human Services and the Administration for Children and Families to assist the Rockaway community.
"EHS is a parent/child development program that provides individualized services in education, early childhood development, mental health, nutrition and parent involvement," said Priscilla Lincoln, Director of VNS Children's and Family Services.
"We believe that children develop in the context of their family and culture, and parents are to be respected as the primary educators and nurturers of their children. Our staff works closely with parents to assist them in developing and utilizing individual and family strengths in order to successfully meet personal and family objectives."
To be eligible for the program you need to be a low-income family with an infant or toddler younger than three years old, or a pregnant woman up to 25 years of age. The EHS program is free for low-income families.
Carol Raphael, President and CEO of Visiting Nurse Service, stated the center's goals during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
"Our Early Head Start program is committed to cultivating partnerships within the Rockaway community through established, meaningful links to community organizations and programs. We recognize that there is a need for the programs we are offering in this community, and we look forward to providing these services."
The newly designed, state-of-the-art center offers a wide range of flexible programs. Some of them include:
- Parent/Child Classes
- An on-site GED program
- Childbirth classes
- Consultation and referral
- Vocational training
- Literacy programs and referrals for housing, home health care, vocational training and community agencies such as WIC, Medicare and public assistance.
To learn more about EHS, the Early Steps Family Center, or the many other programs that are available, call (718) 318-8040.