This week, Groundwork Ohio participated in the first Ohio Home Visiting Summit. Ohio’s voluntary, evidence-based home visiting allows motivated parents to learn how to succeed in their new role and provide children a healthy start with their first and most important teachers—parents. Over the past several years, enhanced emphasis on data and accountability has led to increasing success among Ohio’s home visiting models. We were excited to connect with passionate home visitors and advocates from across the state to learn, collaborate, and share our experience advancing these important programs through Groundwork’s statewide advocacy. During our breakout session, Groundwork Executive Director Shannon Jones challenged home visitors, community health workers, and program administrators to empower themselves with research and knowledge, recognize the importance of data collection and fidelity to the model, and use their knowledge and personal stories to advocate for evidence-based home visiting. Participants left equipped to be advocates for the families with whom they interact daily and to advance the story of home visiting statewide so that we can increase investments, reach more at-risk babies and families, and drive positive outcomes for Ohio. Check out Shannon’s presentation here. Thank you to our friends Jye Breckenridge (Administrator, Early Childhood Home Visiting) and Sandy Oxley (Chief of Maternal, Child and Family Health) at the Ohio Department of Health for their endless passion for home visiting and for making the Summit possible, to the incredible Diedra Henry-Spires and Dr. Benjamin Kearney for sharing their expertise, and to the dedicated home visitors who are heroes to the moms and babies that they serve every day.
Yesterday morning on "The Sound of Ideas," Groundwork Steering Committee member Rebekah Dorman (Director, Invest in Children, Cuyahoga County) applauded the Vote for Ohio Kids campaign's statewide effort to ensure our next governor prioritizes investments in early healthcare and education for our youngest Ohioans. Check out the audio clip here or visit our website to learn more about how you can get involved in the campaign.