About Healthy Families
NVFS' Healthy Families program provides free services in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William to promote healthy child development and prevent child abuse and neglect. This program works with families with children pre-birth to age 3 or 4, depending on jurisdiction. Healthy Families is affiliated with Healthy Families America, an initiative of Prevent Child Abuse America.Healthy Families' four goals are to:
- Promote positive, nurturing, responsive parenting
94% of parents demonstrated positive, nurturing interactions with their children; 97% of families provided an optimal home environment for child growth and development.
- Improve child health and development
98% of prenatal clients deliver healthy babies weighing at least 5.5 pounds, and 95% of children were current on immunizations.
- Promote school readiness
95% of Healthy Families children meet age-appropriate developmental milestones, and 100% of children screened at risk for delays were referred to early intervention services.
- Prevent child abuse and neglect
Family Assessment: A staff member conducts an initial parent interview using the Parent Survey / Family Stress Checklist tool to determine eligibility as well as need for other services. Referrals to community resources are provided as needed.
Home Visits: Family Support Workers (FSWs) provide regular home visits to at-risk families beginning during pregnancy and until child reaches the age of three. Home visiting services include:
- Family Goal Planning: FSWs help families develop family goal plans, which are updated regularly according to family needs.
- Parenting Education: FSWs support parent-child interaction. FSWs use the Parents as Teachers curriculum, which is activity-based and helps builds upon parents’ knowledge of child development.
- Health Education: FSWs provide information on healthcare, family planning, immunizations, and baby and mother care.
- Developmental Screenings: FSWs administer routine developmental screenings and refer children who may have developmental delays to early intervention services.
- School Readiness Activities: FSWs promote early literacy through book sharing, book-making and literacy-based playgroups, among other activities. Depending on funding, children receive new books through partnerships with such programs as The Reading Connection.
- Mental Health Services: Mental health counselors provide short-term, in-home, bilingual counseling services to families in need.
- Referrals: FSWs refer families to other community resources as needed.
Child Car Seat Safety: Register for safety seat education and distribution by calling 571.748.2913. Available to residents of Manassas City, Manassas Park and Prince William County.
Safety Seat Flyer - English
Safety Seat Flyer - Spanish
Read more about Healthy Families in this May 2013 Washington Post article, "Home Visiting Programs Are Preschool In Its Earliest Form" and our feature by Voice of America, "For Healthy Families, Prevention Begins Before Birth."
Fairfax: 703.533.5317 (Annandale), 703.388.1393 (Springfield) or 571.323.3676 (Reston)
Prince William: 571.748.2743