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Thousands of children and parents have benefited from the Early Head Start Program at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Here, moms explain why the program has been so important to them.
Rachel: I had no idea of what motherhood was, and what motherhood should be.
Tyra: Actually one time I thought I couldn’t really deal with kids. And I wanted to just walk away. But once I got into EHS, it was a different, big change for me and my children.
A'Lyce: I’ve got three groups of boys, and Early Head Start helped me keep them healthy, get their shots, gave me the proper training to be a better parent. It’s like home. My kids come here, they run around like they know people, “Hey how you doing?” And they’re watching my children grow.
Anna: The kids, they learn so much, you know, they get to play with each other. They learn cooperation, they learn sharing, they learn to be friendly, and then well the meal is always icing on the cake.
Felicia: They followed me through my pregnancy with my son Jeramiah. They helped a lot with certain issues when they arose regarding my pregnancy, and far as going to the doctor, and medications.
Bianca: My youngest was born early, in and out of the hospital. My home visitor and my health educator was right by my side. When I wanted to give up, they pushed me to keep striving, that I could do it, that they was gonna have my back.
Skye: It was good that they came, the home visit, Ms. Rhonda came. She was 5 months and a half. And she was in our life like for years. And it was really good.
Rachel: My son was recently diagnosed with autism. Because of my son’s situation, I’m always gonna be, I feel, an upward fight, an upward, you know, battle. However I have the tools and the know-how to fight. I have a chance, he has a chance. And we both will have a brighter future because of Early Head Start.
Lisa: Some of the resources that I was able to take advantage of was the wardrobe to work program that they offer, like it’s a resource that they offer, for a job interview. I didn’t have any clothes. So they wrote me out a slip and told me to take is down, and this wonderful lady came out from the back and she was able to help me.
Skye: We did parenting class, we did cooking class, we love the cooking class.
Bianca: Using the resource center that we had, the computers, my child was going to a different doctor’s appointment, and the terminology that they was using. I used the computers to look it up so I could get a better understanding of it.
Tiyonna: I really enjoyed the parenting workshop because it gave me a lot of perspectives on the different ways to raise my kids and the different disciplinary techniques you can use. And it also introduced me to a lot of new friends here.
Lisa: There was not one thing or one issue that I had that they didn’t have somebody on staff to help with, or a resource in their pocket.
Kendal: As a result of being a part of EHS, I have gained a lot of confidence that I didn’t have prior to me becoming a first-time parent.
Tiyonna: I think my family has gained a great deal of not only knowledge, but experience.
Lisa: And I wanted to be a part of this awesome program because I know what they did for my family. They changed our lives.
Asheba: I’ve made lifelong friends. I’ve made a lot of support whereas I can give back now.
A'Lyce: I volunteer here, I’m a peer support here. If they need anything, I just feel like I’ll do anything for 'em because when nobody was there, Early Head Start was there.
Rachel: They are the oxygen in my world, to a world full of carbon dioxide. I can breathe.
Bianca: They’re a part of my life, and always will be.
Related Centers and Programs:
Early Head Start