A new $1.16 million grant through the Affordable Care Act will be used to expand and improve the quality of home visiting services in atrisk communities. The new funding will help local communities improve maternal and newborn health, school readiness, and community resource coordination, and reduce child maltreatment and injuries, and domestic violence.
“Home visiting programs lay the foundation for children’s healthy development and reduce the risk of poor birth outcomes, child abuse and neglect, and school failure,” said Reggie Bicha, Department of Children and Families Secretary. “With these additional resources, we can bring together a wider range of services to address the challenges of vulnerable families and help ensure that they will succeed in the future.”
The grant is targeted to communities with high rates of poor birth outcomes, poor maternal and child health, poverty, crime, domestic violence, high school dropouts, substance abuse, unemployment or child maltreatment. Funded programs must be evidencebased (programs with documented results) or promising practices (programs with preliminary findings of positive results). Technical assistance will be provided to help current programs meet these criteria.
“The problems we are trying to address are long-term, systemic issues that no one entity can address. Collaboration at the state, federal and local levels is needed to help us reach these goals,” said Karen Timberlake, Department of Health Services Secretary. “By enhancing current home visiting services and supporting new programs, we can make an important difference in the lives and futures of Wisconsin families.”
Wisconsin has received several similar grants through the health care reform act which will expand coverage and improve care in the state.