Children need to be healthy in order to grow and learn. OCPYC-funded programs support child health holistically, recognizing that many different factors contribute to overall health. Supporting children’s mental, emotional, and physical health during the COVID-19 crisis is critical to ensuring their future well-being.

In FY 2019-2020, OCPYC’s Growing Up Healthy Initiative worked with 8 child care centers to implement center-directed action plans to meet the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (GO NAPSACC) best practices in Child Nutrition, Breastfeeding and Infant Feeding, Farm to ECE, Oral Health, Physical Activity, Outdoor Play and Learning, and Screen Time. These efforts benefitted more than 500 children ages birth to five enrolled in the centers.

Growing Up Healthy is also engaged in the statewide Farm to Early Care and Education Collaborative, which supports child care centers in developing edible gardens, incorporating fresh and local foods in their menus, and helping children and families understand where and how foodis grown – and how to be healthier eaters as a result.

In FY 2019-2020, Growing Up Healthy provided Farm to ECE education and training to more than 30 child care providers across the county. Growing Up Healthy also trained 29 child care providers in 12 centers in Be Active Kids, an interactive program for children ages birth to five that focuses on improving and maintaining the health of young children through physical activity and nutrition.

Through OCPYC’s support of the Chapel Hill Training Outreach Project’s Assuring Better Child Health and Development (ABCD) Program, training and technical assistance was provided to 21 primary care providers in Orange County to facilitate the identification of children who may benefit from early intervention services.

OCPYC’s support of the Chapel Hill Training Outreach Project’s KidSCope Hispanic Outreach Program helps provide critical, culturally-appropriate, evidence-based mental health therapy to Spanish-speaking children ages birth to five and their families in Orange County.

“Elvira is a mom from Ecuador with a 2-year-old boy who has speech difficulties. She was referred to us as she was feeling overwhelmed, depressed and anxious in her role as a parent. When I first met Elvira she did not have a positive outlook and found parenting quite difficult. Therapy services helped her develop the confidence she needed to be the mother and woman she wanted to be. She is now able to read the messages her child gives her and in doing so, she is able to fill his emotional needs. The mental health services that KidSCope has given her have helped her become stronger and more regulated, and a mom who is able to self-regulate can help her child to do the same.”

–Sofia Moyano-Kleckner, Chapel Hill Training Outreach Project’s KidSCope Hispanic Outreach Program

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