A child’s early years are critical for positive development. In addition, parenting is a difficult honor, and adults can lack resources and knowledge about important parenting skills. Finally, it’s everyone’s business to keep children safe. For these reasons, the team encourages maximum child development, positive parent-child interaction, and involved communities. This better ensures that every child, beginning at birth, will be healthy and successful.

Families and communities of all configurations, income levels, and challenges can benefit from and engage with these services. To access, contact the team at 563-387-1720 or through our contact form.
3:30 pm To 4:30 pm

Howard County Playgroup

Families gain confidence and build supports when they visit with other families. Please consider joining this group of parents and children ages 0-5 years of age, as we gather to strengthen our community. A family educator from Helping Services for Youth ...

1135 Canterbury St
Event Location

Access Family Support Services

This curriculum reinforces that all children will learn, grow, and develop to reach their fullest potential, and that parents are a child’s earliest and best teachers.
>Better understand the Parents as Teachers model

The core values of the Born to Learn™ curriculum start with five basic beliefs:
  1. Parents are their children’s first and most influential teachers.
  2. The early years of a child’s life are critical for optimal development and provide the foundation for success in school and life.
  3. Established and emerging research should be the foundation of parent education and family support, curricula, training materials, and services.
  4. All young children and their families deserve the same opportunities to succeed, regardless of any demographic, geographic, or economic considerations.
  5. An understanding and appreciation of the history and traditions of diverse cultures is essential in serving families.
We have professionally trained family educators who serve families with children ages birth to age three. Families with young children face many new and wonderful challenges. Family Educators can provide the missing links to help promote positive parent-child interaction, encourage maximum child development and promote school readiness.
>Meet the family educators.

In the Home
Family educators can provide services in the comfort of your home. Visits are made at a time that works well for you and your family, depending on what your particular needs may be at any given time.
  • Prenatal teaching and support
  • Certified breastfeeding support
  • Infant/Child weight checks
  • Child passenger safety
  • Healthy, safe home environment checklist
  • Developmental assessments
  • Vision and hearing screenings
  • Resource referral


  • Outside of the Home
    Parent-Child Playgroups | Both children and parents benefit from networking and building relationships with other families who may or may not be going through similar challenges and experiences. These groups give families with children ages zero to three that opportunity while trying and learning new things.
    >Find an upcoming playgroup.

    Family educators will also pass along helpful parenting information and community resources during each group.
    Everyone keeping children safe—guardians, teachers, neighbors—can attend these workshops.

  • Nurtured Heart Approach | Transforms ways children perceive themselves, their caregivers, and the world around them by creating positive environments in which a child can use their energy in successful ways.
    >Additional details for Nurtured Heart Approach

  • Positive Solutions for Families in English and Spanish | Teaches parents the same intervention tools used by teachers in their kid’s classroom for greater consistency and greater results.
    >Additional details for Positive Solutions

  • >Find an Upcoming Workshop
    Care for Kids | Teaches preschool to early elementary age kids about self-esteem, respect for self and others, non-exploitive age-appropriate sexual exploration, rewarding human relationships, and avoidance of sexual coercion.
    >Get more details on Care for Kids.

    Community Partnerships for Protecting Children

    Community Partnerships For Protecting Children (CPPC)

    With CPPC, community-based partnerships work to prevent child abuse, neglect, and re-abuse. They also aim to safely decrease the number of out-of-home placements, and they promote timely reunification when children are placed in foster care.


    Community members, professionals, and families work together to develop and implement local programs, services, supports, and policies.


    The long-term focus: protect children by changing the culture to improve child welfare processes, practices, and policies.

    Four Elements of CPPC

    Community partnerships are founded on the principle of shared responsibility for the safety of children. Partnerships are guided by organized shared decision-making committees that include a wide range of community members.

    • Recruit broad and diverse members
    • Identify and assess community strengths and gaps
    • Develop plans and leverage resources to fill priority gaps
    • Agree on measures, evaluate outcomes, and share accountability for outcomes

    Promote cooperation and form alliances to increase accessible and relevant supports, services, and resources for families whose children are at risk.


    • Increase awareness
    • Establish and maintain relationships with supports and resources
    • Develop an organized infrastructure of neighborhood and community groups
    Identify strengths, resources, and supports to reduce barriers and help families succeed.
  • Work to strengthen the use of family team meetings in the community
  • Use of family team meetings to offer better consistency in the way families function
  • Improve policies and practices to reduce barriers and increase accessibility and relevance of services.
  • Gather community data to identify and assess needs
  • Implement best practices
  • Seek input from both adults and youth
  • Implement and evaluate changes within the community
    • After four years since her first encounter with a Family Educator, a mother reaches out for help again to help ensure her two children and a brand new baby are developing in a healthy way. As chance would have it, she is working with the same Family Educator. She shares, "I was so glad to hear you were the person I would get to see. The first time we met at the hospital, you helped me with breastfeeding questions and how to use the car seat safely. You gave me all that, but most importantly you gave me your contact information. You told me I could call you with any questions I had. That was over four years ago, and I still have all of that in my child's keepsake box."


    • When I first got pregnant...I felt lonely and desperate because I didn’t know what to do. Then I met Lillian Quam… Through her counseling, I was able to learn a lot as a mother,and I felt more prepared for the arrival of my newborn... Thanks to this program, I felt more secure, and I was reassured that my son was developing in a healthy way. I know that I am not alone and that my son and I are in good hands. Thank you.


    • I called your program because my friend told me about the child development activities/information and screenings you do to make sure children are meeting their milestones.


    • I'm so thankful you were a part of our family, because it was you that identified that our child should be evaluated by Early ACCESS. We did get services, and I wouldn't have known about them if it wasn't for you.


    Download Resources

    As we grow up, our bodies change. This is a fun, exciting part of life. We learn new things about our bodies and how to take care of them. This book will help you figure out ways to keep your body safe. It will help you remember, “My body is mine.”

    Here are the things this book will talk about:
  • My body belongs to me.
  • Babies need lots of help.
  • Secrets should be fun.
  • Touching is never a secret.
  • Sometimes secrets make me feel mixed up.
  • These are my four trusted adults.


  • >Download the booklet.

    Contact the Team

    Translate »