Head Start at Home provides weekly home visits for expectant parents, pregnant women, and children birth to three.
Our highly-trained and experienced Home Visitors work with you and your family to:
- Listen to your priorities, ideas, and concerns
- Give support and information during pregnancy
- Join you and your child for fun learning activities
- Observe and learn about your child's development with you, and support your family through growth and change
Your Home Visitor hopes to be your partner in a long-term relationship with your family. They can help you access information, services, and opportunities to connect with other local families! They can also assist you in meeting your goals for your child and family. This includes finding community supports and connecting you with our experts in health, nutrition, disabilities, and mental health.
Head Start at Home
What We Do:
- We spend 90 minutes each week on educational activities with you and your child in your home
- We build a strong relationship with your family
- We partner with you to meet your goals
Who are these services for?
Head Start at Home is for pregnant women, expectant parents, and children birth through three. There are many ways that your family could be eligible.
- If your family has a low income
- If anyone in your family receives SSI, DTA Cash, or SNAP benefits
- If your child is a foster child
- If your family is staying with friends or family temporarily, living in a shelter or motel, or otherwise without housing
How do I sign up?
- You can apply online here or call 413-387-1250.
- Once you apply, one of our enrollment staff members will contact you to start the process.
- Before we can place you on the waitlist, we will meet with you virtually or in person. We will collect documentation of your eligibility. We will also collect your child’s birth certificate and health records. During our meeting with you, we will discuss what other program options interest you.
- Once we have everything we need, we will place you or your child on our waitlist.
- When we have openings in our program, we accept participants from the waitlist. If we accept your child into the program, we will notify you either by phone or letter.
- Before you or your child can begin the program, your Home Visitor will meet with you to finish enrolling.
What can I expect once I am enrolled?
A Home Visitor will schedule and plan with you for each home visit. The visit will include listening to your concerns, ideas, and priorities and doing educational activities with your child based on their interests and your goals for them.
Head Start at Home includes “comprehensive services.” These services are whatever YOUR family needs to meet your goals and to ensure your child’s well-being. Your Home Visitor will be your partner and will get to know your family and your hopes, wishes, and goals. You will also hear about our support staff, experts in mental health, special needs, and more. We can’t wait to meet you!
How do I connect someone else to Head Start at Home?
If you work for a community organization, you can refer someone to our program. Please click here to download our Referral Form. Once you return the form, we will reach out to the family. Your referral will give them priority for enrollment.
CONTACT INFO FOR THE PROGRAM
HS & ELP Enrollment Office
Head Start at Home Supervisor
Forms, Documents & Downloads
Frequently Asked Questions
Our staff are highly qualified, often beyond state and Head Start requirements. Most of our Home Visitors have Bachelor’s degrees.
Our primary curricula are Parents for a Healthy Baby and the Creative Curriculum. All curricula we use align with Head Start Performance Standards, Department of Early Education and Care Frameworks, and National Association for the Education of Young Children criteria.
A home visit starts with a check-in to see how things are going for you and your family. Is there anything we can help you with, such as connecting you with resources in the community or within our program? What have you and your children been up to in the last week? Have you seen your child doing something new?
Next, we move into the fun, educational activity! You and your home visitor plan this activity together before the visit and the activities are always things you and your child like to do. During the activity, you can talk about all the wonderful things your child is doing and how you can see them learning together. Your home visitor will take time to cheer you on for all of the amazing things you are doing to help your child grow and learn.
Lastly, you and your home visitor will plan the activity for the next week, using things that you have in your home or things that they can easily leave with you. This is also another time we can make sure you have everything you need until we meet the following week.
When we are invited into your home during your pregnancy, your home visitor provides support that is personalized to what you need. Your home visitor can come to your home weekly or every other week with a check in phone call on weeks we don’t visit. You and your home visitor can have comfortable and warm conversations together to learn about your concerns and hopes for your pregnancy. They can provide information, based on what you want, to learn more about your pregnancy and how to prepare for your baby’s arrival. We’ll make sure that you have a doctor you trust and we can connect you with providers and resources within the community.
Put simply: We make sure you are not alone during your pregnancy and that you feel ready for your baby to arrive.
After your baby arrives, you can resume home visits with your home visitor each week. Within the first two weeks after your baby is born, our Head Start Health Specialist will join a visit to see how you are doing and make sure you have everything you need as you adjust to being home with your new baby.
During the first three months of your baby’s life, your home visitor can provide an exciting experience with you called the Newborn Behavioral Observation. Newborn babies are developing a lot of skills! You and your home visitor will talk about all of the skills your newborn baby is developing and how you are supporting them. During the Newborn Behavioral Observations you and your home visitor can delight in all the ways your baby shows they love being with you.
We always want to hear from you about what’s going well and what could be better! To read our Parent and Community Complaints Policy, click here.