Sarkeys Foundation and the Arnall Family Foundation have each approved $25,000 grants for Parent Promise to expand its home visiting program to include families with older children.
Parent Promise annually works with 150-170 families each year with children 0-5 using the Parents as Teachers model. With the two grants approved by Arnall Foundation and Sarkeys Foundation, the program will expand to add the Exchange Parent Aide program, which includes an evidence-based model that serves families with children up to 12-years-old. The program’s mission is to prevent neglect and abuse of children by providing parent education and support.
Parent Promise provides trained parent educators to deliver voluntary, in-home parent education and support to families who may be facing a number of challenges in providing a safe, loving and nurturing environment for their children. The services are free to families and focus on child development, health and safety, positive parent-child interactions and connecting families to other resources they need. Parent Promise also works with families to keep children on track for success in school.
The grants from the foundations come at a critical time when state funding for child abuse prevention services is uncertain, said Sherry Fair, executive director of Parent Promise.
“These grants from the Arnall Family Foundation and the Sarkeys Foundation will put us on the path to continuing these much-needed services to children and families,” Fair said.
The Arnall Family Foundation is committed to working with partners like Parent Promise to protect and serve at-risk children and families, said Sue Ann Arnall, founder.
“Prevention services such as these are a critical piece of our community and provide parents with the support and resources they need to create a positive home environment,” Arnall said.
Kim Henry, executive director of Sarkeys Foundation, agrees that in-home parent education and support services must continue.
“The Exchange Parent Aide program fills a service gap in our community by serving families with older children, and it also helps offset any programming cuts that might arise from the state’s current funding situation,” Henry said.
The Employees Community Fund of Boeing Oklahoma City also contributed to the new program by approving a grant in September to provide the curriculum and training for the new program.
Parent Promise has been delivering in-home parent education and support services in Oklahoma County since 1988, and has been a service provider through the Oklahoma State Department of Health since 1995.
Fair said Parent Promise will begin the Exchange Parent Aide program in early 2018. Parent Promise will also continue offering the Parents as Teachers program for families with children 0-5 as funding is available.
“We sincerely appreciate the local foundations and corporations who understand the importance of prevention when it comes to child neglect and abuse,” Fair said. “Home visiting services like Parent Promise are a logical and needed investment in diverting families away from state services, such as DHS and the foster care system. These programs help us strengthen at-risk families and put them on a course for success.”