In This Issue:




  
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Strong Start | Healthy Start is an initiative of the Ingham County Health Department to enhance the health of African-American families and improve birth outcomes in Ingham County. We provide services which include home visiting for expectant and parenting moms and dads with a child up to age two. We also offer free health education workshops that are open to educate pregnant and parenting women, men, families, and the community.

Healthy Start Team
Health Officer
Ingham County Health Department

Deputy Health Officer
Ingham County Health Department

Regina TraylorMSN, RN, CNS
Director, Maternal Child Health Division
Program Supervisor
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Crystal P. TylerPHD, MPH
Strong Start | Healthy Start Evaluator
Program Director, Center for Child and Family Health
Michigan Public Health Institute
 
Alysia Osoff, MSN, RN, CEN
Senior Public Health Nurse
Fetal & Infant Mortality Review (FIMR) Coordinator

Health Educator
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Fatherhood Facilitator
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Community Action Network Coordinator
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Community Health Worker
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Community Health Worker
Strong Start | Healthy Start

Community Health Worker
Strong Start | Healthy Start

LaShawn Sinclaire
Peer Advisor, Health Education

Rachel Reynolds
Peer Advisor, Health Education

Peer Advisor, Dads Matter Program

Administrative Support
Maternal Child Health Division

Quick Links















Departmental and Community Partners
Department of Human Services, Ingham County

Expectant Parent's Organization

Family Outreach Services, Ingham County Health Department

Greater Lansing African-American Health Institute

Infant Mortality Coalition

Ingham County Health Department

Ingham Great Start Collaborative

Ingham Healthy Families

Ingham Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition

Greater Lansing Clergy Forum

Great Parents, Great Start Program

Lansing Housing Commission

League of Women Voters

Maternal Infant Health Program, Ingham County Health Department

McLaren of Greater Lansing

Michigan Public Health Institute

Michigan State University, College of Nursing

Nurse Family Partnership, Ingham County Health Department

Parent-Infant Program

Pathways to Better Health
 
Power of We Consortium

Shared Pregnancy Women's Center

South Side Community Coalition

Sparrow Health System

Tomorrow's Child

Willow Tree Family Center
Healthy Start Welcomes Ashley Gonzalez
Community Health Worker
We are delighted to share that Ashley Gonzalez will join the Strong Start | Healthy Start team as our Community Health Worker effective Monday, April 18, 2016. Her primary responsibilities will consist of providing case management services to prenatal and postpartum women, and children 0-2 through the Healthy Start program. She will attend home visits with clients, working with them to promote healthy prenatal care, support healthy child growth and developmentas well as help program participants navigate and access community services. She will also assist eligible participants to apply for publicly sponsored health care insurance plans, conduct outreach in the community that promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health. Additionally, Ashley will provide information on available resources, provide social support and informal counseling, and advocate for individuals and community health needs. 

Ashley is a resident of Lansing and is very familiar with the community and resources available. Ashley received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Community Services in 2014.  In her previous role with the Ingham County Health Department, Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, she fielded many in-person and professional questions from newly expecting parents of children of all ages.  She coached parents through the process of what to expect during pregnancy and how to access adequate resources, as well as providing ongoing breastfeeding support to expectant and breastfeeding mothers and families.   

She has a passion for community empowerment and advocacy and is excited about her role with Strong Start | Healthy Start.  She previously held positions with the State of Michigan at the Michigan Department of Transportation and the Treasury Department and with Lansing Community College at Finance and Orientation/Welcome Center departments.  She brings a wealth of experience to the Strong Start | Healthy Start team.    
 
Please join Strong Start | Healthy Start in welcoming Ashley in her new role! Her contact information is below:
 
Ashley Gonzalez
Community Health Worker
Strong Start | Healthy Start Program
Ingham County Health Department
5303 S. Cedar Street
Lansing, MI 48909
Direct: 517.887.4322
Greater Lansing Baby Fair 2016
Healthy Start Partners with Willow Tree Family Center to Host Baby Fair
LANSING, Mich. - Parents and soon-to-be parents in and around Lansing are invited to the Greater Lansing Baby Fair, a free event that connects families to local resources.  The event, hosted by the Willow Tree Family Center in partnership with the Ingham County Health Department and nearly 20 local sponsors, will be held at the Lansing Center on Saturday, April 16, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. More than 100 exhibitors and 1,500 attendees are expected.
 
"Part of our mission is to grow strong, empowered families," said Nicole Greiter, president of Willow Tree Family Center. "Being educated and informed sets the stage for families to make healthy, confident decisions. We also want to build community because peer support is paramount to parental success."
 
Exhibitors include Sparrow Health System, McLaren of Greater Lansing, Early On and Great Start, as well as local pediatricians, lactation consultants, midwives, doulas and pediatric dentists. Resources on a variety of topics from car seats to home safety to postpartum depression will be available. On-site screenings and support include lactation services from the Capital Area Breastfeeding Coalition, and blood pressure checks for expectant mothers from the health department. For children in attendance, the Capital Area District Libraries will be promoting early literacy through story times, crafts and character visits.
 
"The prenatal period and the early childhood years are some of the most important in terms of cognitive, social, and physical development," said Linda S. Vail, Ingham County Health Officer. "Many health outcomes and disparities can be traced back to the early years, which is why it is critical to support young families. The baby fair is a great way for parents to connect with all the community has to offer."
 
The first 250 families in attendance will receive a swag bag filled with coupons, samples and free items. 

Local politicians and media are invited to arrive at 9 a.m. prior to the doors opening for a presentation about infant mortality rates and child development. For media assistance on the day of the event, contact Amanda Darche, Health Communication Specialist for the Ingham County Health Department, at (517) 648-9853 or [email protected]
.


For more information about the Greater Lansing Baby Fair visit www.lansingbabyfair.com.

Breastfeeding Campaign
Healthy Start Partners with the Capital Area Breastfeeding Coalition and Local Organizations to Launch Breastfeeding Campaign to Increase Breastfeeding Rates
Breastfeeding is an amazing achievement. Not just for babies who benefit from the nutrients contained in real baby milk, but also for their moms, partners and families. The "Get Real About Breastfeeding" campaign will officially kick off on April 18, 2016 to increase breastfeeding rates among moms.  The campaign seeks to combat misinformation and hurdles, encourage moms to start breastfeeding and continue breastfeeding, and normalize breastfeeding in our culture.

Get Real About Breastfeeding is a social marketing campaign that promotes breastfeeding among women by celebrating mothers who breastfeed, acknowledging that breastfeeding is often not easy, reminding people that breastfeeding in public is legal, healthy, and normal, and encouraging others to provide support to breastfeeding moms and families.  

The images, which will highlight moms from Mid-Michigan who are "breastfeeding champions," will be in billboards throughout Lansing, posters in various locations throughout Mid-Michigan, social media, and they will also be part of a traveling gallery. At the bottom of the posters, the reader will find various image-specific messages such as: "Breastfeeding is natural - but it's hard work.  So if you're a breastfeeding mom - hand on, because it gets a lot easier.  And if you see a nursing mom, remember breastfeeding in public is legal, healthy and normal.  Give her some support!"  A website will also be launched to share breastfeeding moms stories to give families specific & targeted information in a human, relatable, real-world way and link community members to local breastfeeding resources. 

If you would like to be kept up-to-date as new information appears in the community and on the www.getrealaboutbreastfeeding.org site that will be launched on April 18th, please subscribe to our Healthy Start E-Newsletter by following the link on the left navigation menu.
 

    

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322.
Home Visiting Program
By The Numbers (June 2015 - February 2016)

  To view the complete dashboard, click here: Healthy Start Report (June 2015 - February 2015)

 

Healthy Start Dashboard was developed by the Michigan Public Health Institute, Ingham Healthy Start's Program Evaluation Team.

 

      Refer Someone Today!

 

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322

Home Visiting
Teresa Yarbrough Retires After 24 Years of Service
This message comes with mixed feelings as we announce the retirement of one of our veteran Healthy Start team members. Teresa Yarbrough has been a home visitor with the Ingham County Health Department for twenty four years, and she has decided that the time has come to retire.

Teresa began her journey with the Ingham County Health Department twenty four years ago as an Outreach Advocate with the Maternal Infant Outreach Program (MIOP).  She slowly, but surely worked her way up to a Public Health Advocate in 2008 with Family Outreach Services.  She then transitioned to her current role as a Community Health Worker with Strong Start | Healthy Start in 2015, where she was able to utilize her skills to provide support to high-risk African-American women and families through the federally-funded grant.   She also worked closely with other area service providers, including the Sparrow Perinatal Center, Pregnancy Services, Seventh Day Adventist, and Christian Services, among others, to provide resources and coordinated services

Teresa Yarbrough has contributed twenty four years of experience to the Ingham County Health Department, and her achievements will not be forgotten. Her legacy to the Ingham County Health Department, as well as the women and families in our community, will last for many years.  Please join us in wishing her the best in the next steps of her journey.
 
 

Refer someone today!

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Tamara Jones Appointed to MiCHWA Steering Committee 
LANSING, Mich. - Strong Start | Healthy Start is pleased to announce the appointment of Tamara Jones to the Michigan Community Health Worker Alliance (MiCHWA) Steering Committee. Tamara Jones is a Community Health Worker (CHW) with Strong Start | Healthy Start, Ingham County Health Department. Tamara provides case management services to prenatal and postpartum women through the Healthy Start program. She attends home visits with clients, working with them to promote healthy prenatal care, encouraging families through difficult life obstacles. Tamara is a certified phlebotomist and nursing assistant.  She completed her training at Lansing Community College.  New Steering Committee members also include Sarah Bryant, Health Promotion & Prevention Manager, Ingham County Health Department.
 
"I am very excited to join the MiCHWA Steering Committee and ensure that all CHW voices are being heard and amplified as we continue our efforts to strengthen the profession," said Tamara Jones.  "I also look forward to bringing my client's and the community's voice to the decision-making table to strengthen services and outcomes in local communities."
 
"Tamara will bring a wealth of experience to MiCHWA from her successful career at the Ingham County Health Department," said Regina Traylor, Ingham County Health Department, Maternal Child Health Division's Director. "I am thrilled about her appointment to the MiCHWA Steering Committee and I look forward to support her in this new endeavor."
 
MiCHWA is a statewide collaborative whose mission is to promote and sustain the integration of CHWs into Michigan's health and human service systems through coordinated changes in policy and workforce development. The Steering Committee is MiCHWA's governing group, overseeing the work of MiCHWA's working groups and making organizational decisions.
 
For more information about the Michigan Community Health Worker Alliance (MiCHWA), visit http://www.michwa.org.

Refer someone today!

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Elon Geffrard Receives Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) Certification
LANSING, Mich. - Strong Start | Healthy Start is pleased to announce that Elon Geffrard has successfully completed the Lactation Counselor Training course and has obtained Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) Certification.  CLC certification means that Elon has received training and competency verification in breastfeeding and human lactation support including assessing the latching and feeding process, providing corrective interventions, counseling mothers, understanding and applying knowledge of milk production including in special circumstances and other commonly encountered situations. All of this gives CLCs, like Elon, a strong foundation with which to help moms and babies.

Elon Geffrard is a Community Health Worker (CHW) with Strong Start | Healthy Start, Ingham County Health Department. She provides case management services to prenatal and postpartum women, and children 0-2, through the Healthy Start program. She also attends home visits with clients, working with them to promote healthy prenatal care, support healthy child growth and development, as well as help program participants navigate and access community services.  Elon received her Bachelor of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies in Health Cognate in Psychology from Michigan State University. 

"As a CLC I will able to provide more direct support to the women in our community who have a desire to breastfeed their babies. I have the added privilege to be able to share the expert knowledge I've gained with parenting mothers AND fathers the countless benefits of breastfeeding in the first year of their baby's life," said Elon Geffrard.  "I am delighted to add to the 'village' of support for families with young  children in Ingham County.
"Elon will undoubtedly utilize these new set of skills to help increase breastfeeding rates for Healthy Start moms and families," said Isaias Solis, Ingham County Health Department, Healthy Start Supervisor. "I am thrilled about her new credentials, ability to provide enhanced services to families, and I look forward to supporting her."

The CLC certification is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and certifies that the Academy of Lactation Policy and Practice meets the ANSI accreditation program requirements and those set forth in ANSI/ISOIEC 17024:2003 General requirements for bodies operating certification systems of persons for Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC).

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Isaias Solis Elected to National Healthy Start Association Board of Directors 
LANSING, Mich. - The Maternal Child Health Division is pleased to announce the election of Isaias Solis to the National Healthy Start Association Board of Directors.   Isaias is the Strong Start | Healthy Start Supervisor and participates in the development and administration of the Strong Start | Healthy Start program including direct supervision of the SSHS staff. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Relations at Michigan State University, James Madison College and his Master of Social Work degree at the University of Michigan. Isaias is honored to serve the community and works to improve the health of families in Ingham County. He is a proud resident of South Lansing.
 
"I am humbled by this opportunity and for the vote of confidence from the National Healthy Start Association membership," said Isaias Solis.  "I look forward to supporting the National Healthy Start's mission of being the nation's voice in providing leadership and advocacy for health equity, services, and interventions that improve birth outcomes and family wellbeing."
 
"Isaias will bring a wealth of experience to the National Healthy Start Association from his vast amount of experience and number of years working in the non-profit, government, and grassroots sectors," said Regina Traylor, Ingham County Health Department, Maternal Child Health Division's Director. "I look forward to supporting him as we work together with our local, state, and national partners to improve birth outcomes."
 
The National Healthy Start Association is a respected advocate in policies and programs that improve the health status of women, infants and families and strengthen the capacity of Healthy Start programs and community-based MCH organizations nationwide.
 
For more information and to learn more about the National Healthy Start Association (NHSA) visit http://www.nationalhealthystart.org/.

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Healthy Start Partners with Sparrow Hospital to Increase Access For Home Visiting Participants
Soon to be parents can now take advantage of a terrific opportunity to meet and engage Sparrow Hospital and Health Department staff prior to their baby's arrival, as well as receive crucial information about the labor and delivery process and what to expect the day of to be ready for baby's arrival.  The partnership, aimed at increasing access for Medicaid-eligible and home visiting participants, was developed after ongoing dialogue about how to improve the experience of home visiting participants and continuing with ongoing targeted outreach to connect soon to be families to essential perinatal services early on.

Moms-to-be and support persons can expect to learn about:
  • How to get admitted and discharged
  • Caring for their newborn baby
  • Mother/father support during the hospital stay
  • How to schedule baby's first doctor's appointments
  • Connecting with Health Department resources and home visiting services
  • ...and much more! 
Expectant parents are encouraged to take a tour of Sparrow's Maternity Unity four to six weeks in advance of their child's birth. Tours are limited to ten couples and advanced registration is required.
 



For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Ingham and Genesee Counties Coordinate Learning Collaborative Meeting to Strengthen Healthy Start Network
In an effort to continue to strengthen the Michigan Healthy Start Network among Healthy Start grantees in Michigan, Ingham and Genesee Counties brought their teams together on February 11, 2016 at the Genesee County Health Department to began the conversation of utilizing a Quality Improvement process to partner across sectors including, clinical, community, and public health to implement best practices and evidence-based policies to improve birth outcomes.  The goals for the day were to:
  • Ensure that staff from both programs understood the implementation of HS models at the local level for each program.
  • Allow staff to share and reflect on successes and challenges in local program implementation for each program.
  • Allow staff to have a clear picture of each other's program components and reflect and how they are operationalized and how resources can be maximized.
Ingham and Genesse Counties mutual focus is to continue to grow as a Healthy Start network and to strengthen the services that we provide to families in our respective communities.  Staff from both programs heard in detail about the Flint Water Crisis directly from Tamara Brickney, Director of Public Health Services for the Genesee County Health Department, who challenged individuals to start thinking broadly about how the work that we do with Healthy Start impacts our families on all levels.  She emphasized the urgency to address root causes of infant mortality and improving systematic processes that often impede better outcomes for communities.




For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Healthy Start Partners with Birth Kalamazoo, Local Hospitals, Willow Tree Family Center, and the Lansing Doula Network to Improve Birth Outcomes
From March 22-24, 2016, 34 community members representing various sectors from the Mid-Michigan community came together to expand their skills to improve birth outcomes in Mid-Michigan by attending an Intro to Birth for Doulas training.  The training met additional certification requirements with DONA International. Attendees included home visiting participants and representatives from Ingham County Health Department, Sparrow Hospital, McLeran Greater Lansing Hospital, Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), Willow Tree Family Center, Lansing Doula Network, and Lansing Community College.
 
The training was conducted by Jessica English, CD(DONA), BDT(DONA), LCCE, FACCE, from Birth Kalamazoo, LLC.  Attendees learned how doulas support families, comfort measures for labor, ethics and scope of practice, creating a community of support among practicing doulas and other public health professionals, pregnancy anatomy and nutrition, physical preparation for labor, stages of labor, common variations and interventions, cesarean birth, postpartum expectations, birth plans, the hormones of labor and how doula care can impact efficiency, and much more.

The Lansing Doula Network, coordinated by Willow Tree Family Center, will provide ongoing support, professional development, and technical assistance to community members wishing to achieve full DONA International doula certification and hoping to develop a learning community to improve birth outcomes, provide ongoing support to families before and after birth, and improve overall health in our community. 



For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Home Visiting
Participant Spotlight: Latashia Cason
Since June 2015, Strong Start | Healthy Start services have been provided to over 600 mothers, children, and dads via home visits, community workshops, and support groups.  The need and demand for services is astounding and drives our team to continue to positively impact families in Ingham County. One of those family's story is highlighted below.

[By: Latashia Cason, Healthy Start Participant]
  1. Tell us about you and your family I am a single mom with four boys and one girl. My last two children are twins a boy and a girl three weeks old. 
     
  2. Why did you decide to become part of Healthy Start? I was really unsure in the beginning about being a part of the program, but after meeting with my Community Health Worker, Tamara, I really enjoyed her and the things she shared with me about the program and about my pregnancy.
     
  3. What has been your experience?  What have been your key takeaways? I really enjoy the time with my Community Health Worker and sometimes I don't want her to leave. She brings a lot of information, and good ideas for me. Strong Start | Healthy Start has connected me with a lot of community resources, as well as shared important information while I was pregnant and how that I have my twins. I have been to the Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood group and everyone is always willing to listen to what you have to say, make you feel comfortable, and provide support. You really have a lot of support being in this program.
     
  4. What are your pre-natal/post-partum goals? How do you plan to reach them? One of my post-partum goals to get back to work, which I think will be challenging with my twins, but we will make it happen. Also finding a daycare that I feel comfortable with.  I will continue to work on it since I know that I need to work and find a good daycare.
     
  5. What advice would you give other families who want to have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby? Strong Start | Healthy Start is a great program and I think everyone should be involved in this program.
   

Cason Family Community Health Worker
Tamara Jones


Refer someone today!

For more information about our Home Visiting Initiative, contact the Maternal Child Health Division at 517-887-4322 or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Dads Matter Initiative
Flint Water Relief Efforts
Ingham Healthy Start, in collaboration with several Lansing-area residents, delivered an estimated 20,000 bottles of fresh water to Flint, Michigan in January and February 2016.  The local effort was spearheaded by Peer Advisor Freddie Bills with assistance from Fatherhood Facilitator Jonathan Lawrence and the Ingham Healthy Start team.
 
Freddie coordinated the donation in response to Flint's ongoing water crisis, which has left the town with discolored, lead-poisoned water. As a result, some 100,000 residents are without clean drinking water.  The effort initially gained momentum via social media and grew from a one-time donation and delivery effort to multiple trips to Flint to deliver bottled water to area residents.  
 
Aside from being a Peer Advisor for Healthy Start, Freddie is a small business owner, founding Bills Cleaning Solutions and Affordable Family Moving. Through his businesses connections, Freddie was able to garner support and sponsorship for the moving trucks that delivered the water to Flint.   


 

For more information about our Dad's Matter Initiative, contact Jonathan Lawrence via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-449-6046, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Dads Matter Initiative
Dads Matter Workshops Continue to Make An Impact in Community
Father's all across the globe play a very significant role in the growth and development of their children. There are many roles that a father plays when it comes to the entire family well-being. When the fatherhood initiative first began one of the main focuses was to find fathers that were not present in their children's lives and to encourage them to be apart. As the program is progressing, we are finding that there are more fathers present in their children' s lives than not, therefore the focus has shifted. 
 
The term "Dad's Matter" resonates well with the fathers we serve. The fathers that are part of our program enjoy all of the services they receive from Strong Start | Healthy Start. Fathers receive individual case management and have learned more about being a father from the National Fatherhood Initiative's 24/7 Dad® and Effective Black Parenting curricula with topic such as "What It Means to Be a Man" and "Pyramid of Success for Black Children." These topics facilitate a conversation, and challenge fathers to think beyond what they think a father is on a daily basis. 

  

To download the full January 2016 - June 2016 workshop schedule, click here.  
There are now healthy and fun activities at each workshop.  September is Kickboxing month with trainer Antonio Cruz.


For more information about our Dad's Matter Initiative, contact Jonathan Lawrence via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-449-6046, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Dads Matter Initiative
Participant Spotlight: Paul Anderson
Since June 2015, Strong Start | Healthy Start has served over 200 fathers and expectant fathers In Ingham County.  The need and demand for services is astounding and drives our team to continue to positively impact families in Ingham County. One of those family's story is highlighted below.

[Video By: Jonathan Lawrence, Fatherhood Facilitator]


Anderson Family Fatherhood Facilitator:
Jonathan Lawrence
   
 


For more information about our Dad's Matter Initiative, contact Jonathan Lawrence via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-449-6046, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Health Education Initiative
Parents As A Team Family Celebration
Strong Start | Healthy Start held its first Parents As A Team Family Celebration on December 6, 2015.  Parents and children spent a day at Breslin Center for the Michigan State Spartans versus University of Chicago-Loyola NCAA Women's basketball game. This event was organized exclusively for Healthy Start participants and served as a day to acknowledge and celebrate parents and children who have met their goals and milestones with the program.  The goal was to also ensure that we are continuing to promote healthy family activities among our participants and their children. 

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration has developed a program called "Building Blocks for a Healthy Future" that is focused on the importance of family in reducing the incidence of emotional and behavioral problems in children and focuses on starting this process as early as age two. They report seven steps to a healthy parent-child relationship which highlight the importance of spending time with family to foster communication, provide positive reinforcement, role model, teach social skills, and to bond. 

It is apparent that the goal of spending quality family time is to love, understand, and develop the child as a happy, well-adjusted, and contributing member of society. But what if the relationship between parent and child is unhealthy? Innumerable studies reveal several negative outcomes when the child or adolescent does not receive the right love, attention, and guidance from his or her parents.  The Parents As A Team Family Celebration follows this model and ensures that Healthy Start parents and children are afforded opportunities to spend quality time together. 




For more information about our Health Education Initiative, contact Dana Watson via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-512-3074, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Health Education Initative
Health Education Workshops Continue to Make An Impact in Community
Strong Start | Healthy Start offers Health Education workshops throughout Greater Lansing. Currently there are four standing workshops that are open to the public. Workshops are held at:
  • Hildebrandt on the 1st Monday's from 4:00pm-5:00pm (3122 Turner Street, Lansing)
  • Southside Community Coalition on the 3rd Wednesday's from 6:00pm-7:00pm (2101 W. Holmes Road, Lansing)
  • South Washington Apartments on the 4th Monday's from 4:00pm-5:00pm (3200 S. Washington Road, Lansing)
  • Mt. Vernon on the 4th Thursday's from 1:30pm-2:30pm (338 N. Waverly Road, Lansing). 

We serve light food and refreshments, provide child activities through Lansing Parks and Recreation, transportation assistance, and offer door prizes. Each week is dedicated to one topic and one fund activity such as yoga, zumba, line dancing, etc. Our health education topics are expansive and include subjects like breastfeeding, budgeting 101, preventing HIV/STIs,and stress reduction, family planning, CPR training, and many more. Health Education workshops end with a referral option to our Community Health Workers for home visiting, the creation of peer support and new, healthier goals. 
 
 
To download the full January 2016 - June 2016 workshop schedule, click here.
There are now healthy and fun activities at each workshop.  

For more information about our Health Education Initiative, contact Dana Watson via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-512-3074, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Health Education Initative
Dana Watson Appointed to City of East Lansing Human Relations Commission
LANSING, Mich. - Strong Start | Healthy Start is pleased to announce the appointment of Dana Watson to the City of East Lansing, Human Relations Commission.  Dana Watson is a Health Educator with Strong Start | Healthy Start, Ingham County Health Department. Dana develops and presents health education programs to modify current behavior and improve the health of Ingham County residents.  She also informs residents of health risk factors and wellness programs and evaluates, organizes, promotes, and implements health risk reduction and wellness programs such as smoking cessation and community wellness promotion.  Dana received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Michigan State University.  Dana has been with the Ingham County Health Department since 2009.
 
"Human Relations is a huge area of interest for me. As a community member, I am happy for this opportunity to be a Commission member. My career and personal life continue to contain elements of advocacy," said Dana Watson. "I look forward to working with the City of East Lansing towards inclusion, honoring the diversity and supporting residents by upholding civil rights and fair housing in East Lansing."
 
"Dana will bring a wealth of experience to the City of East Lansing, Human Relations Commission from her successful career at the Ingham County Health Department," said Regina Traylor, Ingham County Health Department, Maternal Child Health Division's Director. "I am thrilled about her appointment to the Commission and I look forward to support her in this new endeavor."
 
The City of East Lansing, Human Relations Commission (HRC) protects and promotes human dignity and respect for the rights of all individuals and groups; establishes and implements procedures to receive, investigate, mediate, conciliate, adjust, dispose of, issue orders and hold hearings on complaints arising under the human relations ordinance.
 
For more information about the City of East Lansing Human Relations Commission, visit http://www.lansingmi.gov/hrcs.


For more information about our Health Education Initiative, contact Dana Watson via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-512-3074, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org.
Fetal & Infant Mortality Review Initiative
FIMR Officially Launches the Community Review Team (CRT)
In January 2016, the Ingham County Fetal and Infant Mortality Review (FIMR) Board held its first Case Review Team (CRT) meeting to re-launch a process of examining fetal and infant deaths in the community. The goal of this action oriented program is to identify gaps in services, opportunities for prevention, and improve existing services and resources for women, infants, and families. Mothers who have experienced a loss are asked to participate in a semi-structured interview to gain perspective on their experiences during pregnancy and after delivery. This information, along with medical records data, is presented to the CRT as an anonymous case summary report. Prioritized recommendations are then reported out quarterly to the Community Action Team (CAT) also known as the Ingham County Infant Mortality Coalition for implementation. This two team approach in reviewing cases followed by community action has proven most successful for creating sustainable systems change in FIMR groups across the country. 


FIMR members include representatives from agencies from various sectors in the community, which include the Ingham County Health Department, Shared Pregnancy, Sparrow Hospital, Alliance OB/GYN, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, League of Women Voters, Michigan State University College of Nursing and Human Medicine, Expectant Parents Organization, McLaren Greater Lansing, Community Mental Health of CEI, Sparrow Medical Group OB/GYN, Sparrow NICU, and others.

For more information about the Fetal and Infant Mortality initiative, visit http://strongstarthealthystart.org/coalition


For more information about our Fetal and Infant Mortality Review Initiative, contact Alysia Osoff, RN, MSN, CEN via e-mail at [email protected] or by phone at 517-582-8003. 
Community Action Network
Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood Creates Safe Space for Families
Since January 2016, Black mothers in Metro Lansing who want to breastfeed their babies have a place to go for culturally-relevant peer support. According to the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, Black infants consistently have lower rates of breastfeeding initiation and duration. The CDC has suggested Black mothers may need more targeted support to start and continue breastfeeding. To meet this challenge, a new local group called the Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood, coordinated by Healthy Start and Willow Tree Family Center, was formed to provide peer support for initiating and sustaining breastfeeding while discussing topics such as social barriers to breastfeeding and incorporating breastfeeding into families' lifestyles.



"When I got pregnant I decided to try breastfeeding even though my mother did not breastfeed any of us," said Claretta Duckett-Freeman, a Certified Lactation Counselor and Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood group co-facilitator. "I went to some breastfeeding support groups and no one looked like me. I spent a lot of time feeling strange, even though everything I read told me that breastfeeding was best because most of the people I knew and respected kept asking me why I didn't use formula."

Moms, babies, and their support partners are welcome to attend this free in-person support group. There are breastfeeding supplies available and other items that support the breastfeeding relationship. If desired, mothers are also able to meet with Breastfeeding Peer Counselors to get advise on breastfeeding concerns and to discuss topics such as milk storage, social barriers, and incorporating breastfeeding into their lifestyles.There are also meals provided. 

Participants in the Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood are also active participants in the Leadership Council, which is the consumer voice of the Infant Mortality Coalition in Ingham County. 


For more information about the Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood, visit http://www.willowtreefamily.com/event/black-breastfeeding-sisterhood


For more information about our Community Action Network, contact Na'imah Muhammad via e-mail at [email protected], by phone at 517-420-5421, or visit www.strongstarthealthystart.org
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month
"Building Community, Building Hope"
National Child Abuse Prevention Month is a time to acknowledge the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child abuse and neglect, and to promote the social and emotional well-being of children and families. During the month of April and throughout the year, communities are encouraged to share child abuse and neglect prevention awareness strategies and activities and promote prevention across the country.


The first Federal child protection legislation, CAPTA was signed by President Nixon on January 31, 1974 and marked the beginning of a new national response to the problem of child abuse and neglect. The legislation provided Federal assistance to States for prevention, identification, and treatment programs. It also created the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect (now known as the Office on Child Abuse and Neglect) within the Children's Bureau to serve as a Federal focal point for CAPTA activities. Today CAPTA, most recently reauthorized in 2010, continues to provide minimum standards for child maltreatment definitions and support States' prevention and intervention efforts.

 
To learn more about National Child Abuse Prevention Month or to learn about events in your local community visit the US Department of Health and Human Services.
Upcoming Events
For a complete listing of upcoming events, visit: www.strongstarthealthystart.org/coalition 

We attempt to update our online calendar as frequently as possible.  If you have any events that you would like listed, please send them via e-mail at [email protected] 
Health Education Workshops
1st Monday's of the Month 
4:00PM - 5:00PM
Hildebrandt Park, Community Room
3122 Turner Street, Lansing, MI

3rd Wednesday's of the Month  
6:00PM - 7:00PM
Southside Community Coalition
2101 West Holmes Road, Lansing, MI

4th Monday's of the Month
4:00PM - 5:00PM
South Washington Park, Community Room
3200 South Washington Avenue, Lansing, MI

4th Thursday's of the Month  

1:30PM - 2:30PM
Mt. Vernon Park, Community Room
338 North Waverly Road, Lansing, MI

For more information and to register, contact Dana Watson at 517-512-3074. 
Dads Matter Workshops
2nd Wednesday's of the Month
3:00PM - 4:00PM
South Washington Park, Community Room
3200 South Washington Avenue, Lansing, MI

4th Saturday's of the Month
11:00AM - 12:00PM
Tabernacle of David Church
12645 West Holmes Road, Lansing, MI

Evidence-based workshops using 24/7 Dads ® and Effective Black Parenting ® curricula, meaning that these materials have already been tested and proven effective in helping fathers become better fathers, couples become better partners, and single fathers become better partners in a future relationship.

For more information and to register, contact Jonathan Lawrence at 517-449-6046. 
Barbershop Talk
1st and 3rd Thurday's of the Month
2:00PM - 3:00PM
True Styles and Fades
3420 Pleasant Grove Road, Lansing, MI

Open and focused discussion with fathers at your local barbershop. Dads and children alike are all welcome to participate while getting a haircut or waiting to get a haircut.  Topics vary and are catered to the interests of the audience and focus on real-life issues that fathers are experiencing in their everyday lives.  Using 24/7 Dads, Barbershop Talk aims to equip father with tools to become great fathers. 

For more information and to register, contact Jonathan Lawrence at 517-449-6046. 
Community Action Network: Black Breastfeeding Sisterhood
1st and 3rd Monday's of the Month
3:00PM - 5:00PM
Willow Tree Family Center
3333 Pennsylvania Avenue, Lansing, MI

Join us along with Strong Start | Healthy Start for our FREE mother-led breastfeeding support group held twice monthly. Share your experiences and learn from other mothers in a welcoming and supportive community setting. Pregnant and breastfeeding mothers will enjoy fellowship, sisterhood and breastfeeding support. Mothers are encouraged to bring their babies, older children, and their supportive partners. FREE SNACKS PROVIDED & DOOR PRIZES!

Meet with Breastfeeding Peer Counselors to get advise on breastfeeding concerns and to discuss topics such as milk storage, social barriers, and incorporating breastfeeding into your lifestyle.

For more information and to register, contact Na'imah Muhammad at 517-420-5421. 
Infant Mortality Coalition Meeting
Thursday, April 28, 2016 
1:30PM - 3:30PM

Atrium Conference Room, Ingham County Human Services Building
5303 S. Cedar Street, Lansing, MI

The Infant Mortality Coalition attempts to address infant health disparities and ultimately reduce inequities in infant mortality in Ingham County. The overarching goal of the initiative is to keep mothers and infants alive and well before, during and after birth.  The Infant Mortality Coalition meets on the 4th Thursday of every month, from 1:30-3:30pm at the Ingham County Health Department, 5303 S Cedar in Lansing.


For more information and to register, click here.
Capital Area Baby Cafe
Every Thursday
1:30PM and 3:00PM
Ingham County Health Department
WIC Informational Mall
5303 S. Cedar St., Lansing, MI

For moms who are breastfeeding or thinking about breastfeeding.  Babies, young children, and mom's support person are welcome.  Light refreshments served.  Breast pumps available for loan.

For more information, call the Expectant Parents Organization at 517-331-7365.
Legislative Updates
Schor Introduces Infant Safe Sleep Bill
State Representative Andy Schor (D-Lansing) introduced House Bill 5517 yesterday, which requires that all child care centers, group child care homes and family child care homes that provide care for children under 1 year of age must implement and maintain a written safe sleep policy. This legislation also requires that all licensees, registrants and employees of those facilities review the policy and sign an agreement that states that they acknowledge and understand that safe sleep policies are to be used as describedRead More
Duckworth's Bipartisan Friendly Airports for Mothers (FAM) Act Passes Senate Commerce Committee
Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth's bipartisan Friendly Airports for Mothers (FAM) Act-which would ensure breastfeeding mothers traveling through large- and medium-sized airports have accessible, clean and convenient lactation rooms to use-was included without objection in a broader legislative package reported out of the Senate Commerce Committee today.  

Duckworth's FAM Act, which was also included in the House's version of the FAA Reauthorization Act, would ensure that all large and medium hub airports in the United States to provide a private space that is accessible to persons with disabilities in each terminal for mothers to express breastmilk within two years. Since its introduction, the FAM Act has received positive feedback from Members of Congress, advocacy organizations and constituents throughout Illinois. Read More
Court Rules Vaccinations Can Be Ordered If Child Removed From Home
Parents who have lost their rights over their children cannot order that a child not be vaccinated, even when the case is in the dispositional phase, the Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday. In a case that involves parents who were judged unfit because they exposed their four children to periods of homelessness, unstable housing as well as lack of financial support and sufficient food, (COA docket No. 328826) Judge Joel Hoekstra, joined by Judge Henry Saad and Judge David Sawyer said the parents lost, at least temporarily, the right to make medical decisions for their children when they were judged unfit. The parents objected to a ruling that the children would be vaccinated, based on medical recommendations, because of their religious beliefs. Read More
Resources
2016-2019 Infant Mortality Reduction Plan, State of Michigan
All babies should be born healthy, thrive in supportive communities, and have the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives. In 2012, the State of Michigan released the 2012-2015 Infant Mortality Reduction Plan in response to persistently high infant mortality rates and significant disparities in birth outcomes. Moving forward, Michigan pledges its continued commitment to improving birth outcomes with the release of this 2016-2019 Infant Mortality Reduction Plan. This document, also referred to as the Plan, provides background information about the planning process, building on the 2012- 2015 Infant Mortality Reduction Plan, and incorporating successes and lessons learned from its implementation over the past three years. 

The Plan describes progress to date, and it provides a roadmap for ongoing improvement in birth outcomes. The accomplishments and activities of the 2012-2015 Plan are described in detail in this document, as are descriptions of existing statewide projects that support healthy mothers and babies. The Plan goals and strategies are supported by new organizational structures to assure effective implementation. Read More
Kids Count in Michigan Data Book 2016
For 25 years, the annual Kids Count in Michigan Data Book has reviewed various background and trend data to evaluate the wellbeing of children in the state. The base period for the 2016 book is 2006 compared to 2014, unless otherwise noted. The report analyzes 16 key indicators across four domains: 1) economic security; 2) health and safety; 3) family and community; and 4) education. The overall child well-being rank is based on a county's rank in each of the 16 measures.

New this year is additional background with a breakdown of the child population by age, level of mother's education, high poverty neighborhoods, and utilization of Early On services and the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program. Not available this year was data on birth defects. An additional education indicator was added to measure the trend of 3- and 4-year-olds in preschool. Read More