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Grant Awarded for Addressing Maternal and Child Health in Dare County

Post Date:06/27/2016 8:30 a.m.
Dare County Department of Health & Human Services was recently awarded funds from the state to implement evidence-based strategies to address maternal and child health issues. The goals were to plan and provide capacity-building activities which will lead to improved birth outcomes, improved overall health status of children ages 0-5 and to low the infant mortality rate.

A local team was formed consisting of members from multiple community organizations. Partners were from The Children and Youth Partnership, The Outer Banks Birth Network, Breastfeeding Bistro, Mommy and Me, Dare County Schools, PORT/New Horizons, March of Dimes, Head Start and parents.

Ultimately, Dare County Department of Health & Human Services felt the greatest impact to the residents of the community would be to offer the opportunity for partner organizations to apply for mini grants to help promote their organization's work in the community. Funds were awarded to several agencies throughout Dare County.

The Breastfeeding Bistro was provided funds to purchase supplies to enhance their Mothering Tent which provides a private place for mothers to breastfeed at various community events. They were also provided funds to have an additional six individuals trained as Breastfeeding Peer Counselors.

The Outer Banks Birth Network was provided funds to work towards educating, de- stigmatizing and normalizing feelings towards postpartum mood disorders. The organization plans to send staff to trainings on the issue, and to purchase a documentary "The Dark Side of the Full Moon" which will be utilized to provide free community member and provider educational opportunities. The Children & Youth Partnership was awarded funds to enhance the Triple P Program through the purchase of educational materials and resources. There are currently 11 trained individuals in Dare County as certified Triple P Counselors representing 5 agencies. Triple P is a parenting intervention with the main goals of increasing the knowledge, skills, and confidence of parents and reducing the prevalence of mental health, emotional, and behavioral problems in children and adolescents. Additional funding was awarded to assure these agencies such as PORT/New Horizons and Dare County Schools have access to materials and resources to provide to their clients.

Dare County Schools were awarded funds to purchase resources and materials to support the expansion of their Raising a Reader program to all Pre-K classrooms.

Internally, funding was awarded to The Women, Infants and Children (WIC), Baby Links, and Maternal Health programs to provide resources, supplies, and equipment to maintain current services and to expand additional services to Hatteras Island.

"This team consists of new as well as previously existing partners," commented Debbie Dutton, Clinical Services Nursing Director. "We are very proud of the work of this team and while the grant timeline has ended, activities are continuing throughout our community. Additionally, the team has discussed remaining intact to continue to find opportunities to collaborate further."

For more information on the Maternal Child Health Grant project, please contact Debbie Dutton, Clinical Services Nursing Director, at debbie.dutton@darenc.com or 252.475.9366. The Dare County Department of Health & Human Services is committed to meeting the evolving health and social needs of our community. For more information visit darenc.com.
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