Help Me Grow Alameda County is a system of support for families and providers to promote children's developmental growth.
Click on Help Me Grow Form to refer a family. Fax completed form to Help Me Grow at (510)927-3117.
Our priority is to ensure that children ages 0 – 5 reach their full potential through promotion, prevention and early intervention efforts. We know that the first 5 years of life are an important time to nurture children’s development and to act early if a child has a developmental concern. When children receive early, timely and effective help, they are more likely to succeed in school and life. To help our children grow, we are working in the following areas.
Early Identification. We work with early childhood providers to ensure that children receive regular developmental screenings to help families understand how their child is developing and identify developmental and/or social-emotional concerns as soon as possible. We also help healthcare and early care and education (ECE) providers to establish systems for developmental screening and referrals. Help Me Grow currently provides ongoing training and technical assistance to over 40 pediatric and ECE sites.
Referrals. When children have a developmental concern, they may need referrals to local agencies for assessments, services or supports to best meet their individual needs. We help parents and providers identify appropriate referrals through training, a referral phone line (Linkage Line) and family navigation. In 2013, we will be launching an Early Childhood Online Resource Directory for providers and parents to easily access comprehensive information about services and supports available in Alameda County for children 0 – 5 years.
Central Access Point for Developmental Resources & Information. Through the Help Me Grow phone line, we provide free and timely help to families and providers. Multilingual staff answer parent's questions about children's learning, behavior and development. They help families understand screening results and work with families to determine next steps for early intervention. Staff also liaison with referring providers to coordinate care. Families and providers can contact the Help Me Grow phone line Monday - Friday at (888)510-1211.
Family Navigation. For families that want additional support, staff work individually with families to help them get connected to services and supports for their child and their family. Throughout this process, families build their capacity to navigate services and advocate for their child. Staff also coordinate with agencies on behalf of families, help with interpretation, and follow-up to see how the child and family are doing and offer additional support if needed.
County Collaboration. We build collaboration across county agencies, community-based organizations and providers to ensure that our efforts are informed by the providers that we work with and parents that use our services. We also work to ensure that different agencies and systems are working together to help create a more coordinated system of care for families.
Social Marketing. We are developing a communication campaign to help raise awareness of children's development and break down barriers to seeking help and accessing care when a child has a concern. This effort is being supported by Better World Advertising, a San Francisco-based social marketing firm. Plans are to launch the campaign in spring of 2013.
Data Collection and Analysis. Evaluation staff collect data on screening rates and results through our Help Me Grow sites and data from the Linkage Line and Family Navigation. Combined, this data enables us to monitor family needs, referrals and the quality of our work. It also helps us to better understand barriers faced by parents and professionals for early identification. We also analyze data from various agencies to understand gaps in systems and to inform our priorities.
Our Implementation Partners
- Alameda County Medical Home Project
- Alameda County Public Health Department
- Alameda County Social Services Agency
- Center for the Vulnerable Child – Children’s Hospital Oakland
- Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies: BANANAS, 4C’s and Child Care Links
- City of Berkeley Public Health Department
- Family Resource Network
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