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AWARE Ink Newsletter

  • jpeterson

AWARE Awarded Innovation Grant and Starts New Early Head Start Classroom in Billings

Exciting things are happening in the world of AWARE Early Childhood Services. In January, it was announced that AWARE received an Innovation grant through the Center for Children, Families, and Workforce Development at the University of Montana, in partnership with the Montana Children’s Mental Health Bureau. The $111,000 in grant funding will support enhancing family engagement through Early Childhood Services (Pictured above, the new classroom in Billings).

The AWARE Early Childhood Services team will put this grant to work with a goal of developing a support system for families that increases their engagement through parenting skills and resilience training. The program focuses on preventing maltreatment and neglect and increasing success for reunification and long-term family well-being.

This project includes an exciting partnership with HomeFront and Child and Family Services (CFS) and other potential community providers.

In addition to traditional Early Head Start services, this partnership will provide a year-round, therapeutic, licensed, birth-to-five childcare on the HomeFront property on the south side of Billings, which is conjoined with current HomeFront living units. This arrangement will remove many barriers that families experience, including transportation for families who reside on this campus, and provide them with necessary, quality childcare, along with therapeutic support and options that they would not otherwise have. In addition to a wholistic child development program, this proposal includes the development of peer mentors, who will be instrumental in the future to assist and support new families entering the program.

Colleen Bosch, the AWARE Early Head Start Director shares, “our unique partnership with HomeFront allows us the very exciting opportunity to bring additional Early Head Start services to the community of Billings as well as offering childcare services for 0-5 year olds.”

The newest AWARE Early Head Start classroom is now open in Billings. AWARE is recruiting accepting applications for children aged 0-5. To learn more please contact Colleen at cbosch@aware-inc.org.

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