Family support is an array of community-based services designed to enable and empower families by building on individual and family capabilities that support and strengthen parenting capabilities and overall family functioning. Home visiting is a strategy for delivering family support services. Different programs that use home visiting as a delivery method can have very different goals e.g., preventing child abuse, school readiness, parent involvement, and advocacy. Iowa currently has a patchwork of family support programs operating at various levels of effectiveness that vary in goals, program models they follow, funding levels, and training and support for staff.
Families, in all the diverse patterns, sizes, creeds, and colors they come in; are the heart and soul of our society. The condition of children's lives largely reflects the well-being of their families. Parents have the greatest impact on their child's development and success, but many need support in learning how to nurture and teach their child. Every day children learn about life and who they are through interactions with and observations of their parents and other primary caregivers.
Lutheran Services in Iowa coordinates the IFSC for the state of Iowa. The program is beginning to prepare for the transition to re-credentialing programs from the current system that focuses primarily on providing technical assistance. 94% of Iowa counties have at least one family support program involved in the IFSC.
This is the official Iowa Family Support web site from IDPH - Bureau of Family Health. Here you will find details regarding Iowa's Maternal, Infant, Early ChildhoodHome Visitation (MIECHV) grant; as well as a link to the state funded HOPES Programs website; and other information.