Pre-service and on-going professional training efforts for home visitors, directors, and supervisors are essential to ensure program quality and fidelity. As of the fall 2011, from a review of 22 home visiting programs HomVEE identified nine that meet the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) criteria for evidence-based early childhood home visiting service delivery models. Below are summaries and links to the training programs available for each of these models.
Child FIRST is currently serving families with young children in Connecticut who are at-risk for serious emotional disturbance, physical health and developmental issues, learning problems, and abuse and neglect. Staff personnel interesting in implementing this program are trained in the Learning Collaborative approach, created by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Pre-service training includes a seminar, supervision of two home-based cases, and learning sessions. Continued training sessions are also provided through the first 18 months of implementing the program, with ongoing assistance available during on-site visits, and web and telephone consultation. To become certified in implementing Child FIRST, certain requirements must be met and are listed on HomVEE’s website: http://homvee.acf.hhs.gov/document.aspx?rid=3&sid=42&mid=3. For more information on the program and research supporting its evidence, please visit the program’s website: http://www.childfirstct.org/.
Early Head Start-Home Visiting
Early Head Start is a federally funded, comprehensive program that focuses on child development and promoting strong families, and includes monthly activities for program families to gather and socialize. Program services are targeted to assist pregnant mothers and low-income families with infants and toddlers. Extensive training and technical assistance is available through the Early Head Start National Resource Center, including web-based training as well as institutes and conferences. In order to start an Early Head Start program, a grant must first be obtained from one of the ten Administration for Children and Families Regional Offices and the Office of Head Start's American Indian-Alaska Native and Migrant and Seasonal Workers Program Branches. For more information on obtaining a grant, please visit: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/office/ohs. Detailed information on Early Head Start can be found at: http://www.ehsnrc.org/AboutUs/ehs.htm.
Early Intervention Program for Adolescent Mothers (EIP)
This program was designed by the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Nursing and the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health, Division of Community Health Services to serve pregnant minority adolescents that intend to keep and raise their child. During the program’s implementation, public health nurses serve as the home visitors and receive approximately 60 hours of pre-service training and occasional in-service training. Information regarding training options is not yet posted. Please visit HomVEE’s website featuring this program for further information on the program model and program contact information for additional inquiries: http://homvee.acf.hhs.gov/document.aspx?rid=3&sid=39&mid=6.
Family Check-Up provides preventative and treatment services that aims to improve family management, parenting skills, parent involvement, maternal depression, child behavior, academic success, and improve internalizing problems. Training is provided at the University of Oregon’s Child and Family Center and Arizona State University, and may be provided at the site of program implementation. Training sessions extend across two to four days and educate home visitors on the empirical evidence and foundation of the home visiting model, as well as on techniques for conducting family interviews and systematic assessments. Personnel from the training team provide a needs assessment prior to program implementation, fidelity assessment, supervision, and feedback. For further information, please visit: http://pages.uoregon.edu/cfc/educa-training.htm.
Healthy Families America (HFA)
Healthy Families America (HFA) provides services for high risk families, such as those who struggle with single parenthood, low-income, domestic violence, substance abuse, and mental health issues. HFA offers a multitude of training options through their national office under the following topics: home visitor assessment, overall home visitors’ skills, supervision and program management, core training for all staff, prenatal support, and other topics that fit the specific program or site’s needs. The duration of training and associated costs depend on the type of training needed as well as whether a program is affiliated with HFA. In-depth training details, information regarding their national conference, and contact information can be found at: http://www.healthyfamiliesamerica.org/network_resources/training.shtml
Healthy Steps is implemented in 19 states and offers a comprehensive training opportunity for groups that have demonstrated thorough planning in how to implement and maintain the program (e.g., identify funding sources) as well as meet several specific certification criteria required by the national office. A “Getting Started” package with program information and materials is available for purchase and is recommended to accompany the three-day training provided by the national office at the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) or may be hosted on-site. This training course incorporates interactive strategies, case conceptualization and problem solving, and scientific and clinical discussions of topics such as child development, learning, parent-child relationships, and risky health habits. Lead clinicians and other clinicians that directly interact with the families are required to participate in this training, and other staff members are encouraged to participate in training in the Healthy Steps model and to learn their specific roles in the program. An interactive multimedia training and resource kit also provides further training and parent materials for distribution. Technical assistance, consultation, and resource materials are available prior to and during program implementation. For more information on training, please visit: http://www.healthysteps.org/
Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY):
The HIPPY model has been used in multiple countries and utilizes home visits and group meetings to empower parents to be their child’s first teacher and to encourage parent involvement in their child’s schooling. The curriculum for parents and children aim to enhance children’s cognitive, socio-emotional, and physical development, and to develop school readiness skills. The national office provides preservice training and bi-annual site visits during the initial year of operation. Program supervisors and coordinators are encouraged to attend at least the first two days of the preservice training in order to learn more about HIPPY to determine its fit within the site’s goals and prepare for training their home visitors in the model. For further information on how to start up a HIPPY program, please visit: http://www.hippyusa.org/the_hippy_model_start_a_program.php.
Nurse Family Partnership (NFP)
The NFP serves low-income, first time parents during their pregnancy through their child’s second birthday. In-class and distance training opportunities are provided to Nurse Family Partnership (NFP) home visiting nurses and nurse advisors. The training focuses on developing therapeutic nurse-client relationships, understanding guidelines of home visits, building communication and problem-solving skills, and attending team and supervisor meetings to cope with their experiences and reflect upon their skills. Three theories- self-efficacy, human ecology, and attachment- drive the training and services provided through NFP. More information on training with the program can be found at: http://www.nursefamilypartnership.org/nurses.
Parents as Teachers
Numerous of training sessions are made available through PAT to fit a variety of needs. Professional development is available for PAT Born to Learn parent educators and training programs to become certified in implementing the Parents as Teachers program. Parents as Teachers also offers on-line or in-person trainings through their Knowledge Studio, a division with its own specialized curricula and training. A sample of topics offered for training includes: building relationships within families, issues working with teen parents, and learning the effects of neurotoxins on child development, learning, and behavior. A three-day training is also offered to programs that do not meet the requirements to become a Parent as Teachers site, and involves learning ways to enhance child development, promote healthy parent-child interactions, assist parents with their parenting demands, and support the family to enhance its impacts on child development and its protective factors. Further information can be found on the Parents as Teachers website: http://www.parentsasteachers.org/training.