University Park, IL–(ENEWSPF)– Thanks to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, Governors State University will receive a two year, $1.7 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services to establish an Early Head Start Program at the Family Development Center (FDC).
According to Carol Morrison, Executive Director of the Family Development Center, the grant will enable Governors State University to create 20 new jobs and serve 72 families through Early Head Start, a free, comprehensive program for low-income families.
Early Head Start provides specialized support services to qualified pregnant mothers and children, up to their third birthday, who live in Will County, east of I-57, and the immediate families of GSU staff and students regardless of where they live. Participants need not be students at GSU.
Components of Early Head Start include prenatal support for pregnant women, home visits from a child development specialist, educational opportunities for pregnant women and parents, and support services linking families to social services in the community, as well as infant and toddler childcare.
“Families in Early Head Start will have access to childcare services while they are working or attending school to improve their skills and enhance future employment opportunities. This program benefits children, their parents, and our community,” added Morrison.
“Early Head Start services help reduce premature births, increase school readiness, and support young families,” said Dr. Deborah Bordelon, Dean of the College of Education. “Governors State is pleased to offer this invaluable service to our families and provide an additional economic boost to our local economy.”
The announcement of this grant comes as the College of Health and Human Services at Governors State University was awarded a $4.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The DOL grant will help provide training and placement services to unemployed, dislocated, and low-wage incumbent workers enabling them to pursue healthcare careers.
The Family Development Center is located on the campus of Governors State University, 1 University Parkway, University Park, Illinois. For more information about the Early Head Start Program at the GSU Family Development Center, call 708.235.7300 or visit www.govst.edu/children.