Florida MIECHV aims to improve coordination and collaboration among programs serving families with children age 0-5 at the state and local level, leveraging resources and linking parents to services most appropriate to their needs and preferences.
Florida has a well-developed network of research-informed and evidence-based home visiting programs that focus on maternal and child health, prevention of abuse and neglect, and school readiness. Florida MIECHV supports the development of coordinated systems of care through its participation in and support of cross-sector, inter-agency projects, and the implementation of coordinated intake processes using the Healthy Start Prenatal and Infant Screens.
CONNECT is the state’s new coordinated intake and referral program. Implemented by local Healthy Start Coalitions, CONNECT links families to home visiting program available in their community based on their eligibility, preferences and need. Participating home visiting programs include Healthy Families Florida, Parents as Teachers, Nurse-Family Partnership, Early Head Start, and state and federal Healthy Start.
A two-year learning collaborative funded by FL MIECHV created a foundation for the development and implementation of CONNECT. The effort was recognized as a promising practice by the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP) and is featured in the organization’s Innovation Station.
The goal of the Florida ECCS Impact Project is to enhance early childhood systems building and demonstrate improved outcomes in population-based children’s developmental health and family well-being indicators using a Collaborative, Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN) approach. Additional goals of the Florida ECCS Impact Project are the development of collective impact expertise, operationalization of racial equity, and implementation and sustainability of efforts at the state, county and community levels.
Florida is one of 12 states awarded the five-year ECCS Impact grant by HRSA. The Florida Association of Healthy Start Coalitions, Inc. (FAHSC), the nonprofit organization administering FL MIECHV, oversee the ECCS Impact grant.
This project builds on current state efforts and partnerships to improve the developmental health of young children and family well-being in high-need communities with a focus on racial equity. The project is working in Liberty City with the Miami Children’s Initiative, and in the Town and Country community of Tampa with Champions for Children.
Additional funding, provided in 2019 through Nemours Children’s Health System and Project HOPE (Harnessing Opportunity for Positive, Equitable Early Childhood Development) has enable the project to extend and expand its work to additional place-based communities.