The Kids Count Program, operating since March 1999, is an early intervention, home visiting program based on the Healthy Families America Model. It is a voluntary program that works with overburdened families who are parenting for the first time.
This program is designed to promote positive parent-child interaction, healthy childhood growth and development, and strong, healthy families. In partnership with other community services, this program strives to offer holistic support based on the unique strengths and needs of individual families.
Service is provided to parents who are expecting or with a baby of up to 3 months of age. Referral to Kids Count is through Public Health Nurses.
Contact the Public Health Nurse in your area:
Kids Count is a home visiting program that puts families at the center of service. Trained staff work to build a trusting, caring relationship with you while focusing on the unique strengths and needs of your family. Information, education, support and referral to other community resources are provided so you can have the healthiest pregnancy and baby possible while preparing for the adjustment to your new role as a parent including changes regarding school and/or work. After the baby is born, the program expands to promote parent /child bonding and attachment which is the foundation for a healthy relationship with your child and his or her later success in life. Ideas about how to support your infant/child’s growth and development and increase your parenting confidence by using positive parenting strategies are also offered. Throughout the program, assistance is available for dealing with difficult life stressors. This will enable you to problem solve to create, a safe, nurturing environment for yourself and your child, as well as plan for your future. You will be able to talk with your Family Outreach Worker and choose the goals you would like to achieve for yourself, your child and your family at any time during the program.
Participation in Kids Count is voluntary and no fees charged for this service.
A more detailed description of the program structure, philosophy and theories are available on request.
The Kids Count Program is for first time parents who are either pregnant or parenting an infant less than 3 months of age at program entry. At the time of the referral you must live in the Kelowna/West Kelowna area.
Referrals can be made by self or other community professionals to the Public Health Nurses (PHN) who will meet with you to determine if the program is the best fit for you and to complete the referral process. Service is on a first come first serve basis. If the program is full, the PHN will consult with the Kids Count Supervisor to determine if space will be available before your baby turns 3 months of age and request your referral be considered at that time or refer you to other parenting programs in the community.
Duration of Services & Service Capacity
The program runs Mon to Friday from 8:30am to 4:30pm. Your Family Outreach Worker will make every effort to be flexible and arrange home visits to accommodate your family’s schedule during these times. Most visits are about one to one and a half hours long but depend on family needs. The frequency of visits is based on Levels of Service which change over the duration of the program. Level One: weekly visits; Level Two: every 2nd week; Level Three: once per month and Level Four: once every three months or by parent request. Kids Count can begin during pregnancy and is intended to be a long term service which invites you to stay involved until your child reaches 3 to 5 years of age.
Referral, Orientation, and Intake to the Service
Our Program Supervisor will receive the referral from your Public Health Nurse and will then match you with a Family Outreach Worker. The Family Outreach Worker will contact you to arrange a home visit. During this appointment the details of the service will be explained to you and you will have an opportunity to ask questions. Also, at this time, you will be required to sign a Consent to Receive Services as well as a Consent to Release of Information form. This form tells what information you have given permission to share and with whom we can share it.
Assessing and Meeting Your Needs
Your Family Outreach Worker will spend time getting to know you, learning what is important to you and any areas of concern. This information will help us develop an Individualized Family Service Plan with you. This will guide your goals while receiving service from Kids Count. As your goals may change over time, your Family Outreach Worker will check in with you about them from time to time.
Staff will give you information and referrals to other community services/resources as needed.
We value healthy, caring relationships and want to develop these with Kids Count participants. We treat families with respect and courtesy and expect the same of parents. Your Family Outreach Worker will make every effort to schedule regular visits, be on time for visits and call you if she is going to be exceptionally late or needs to cancel. If you are ill or unable keep a visit for some reason, we ask that you let us know as soon as possible.