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Funding for program that helps Hoosier families set to expire unless Congress acts

Funding for the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program will end in September unless Congress reauthorizes it
Kendra Scott & Kayla Boyd
Posted at 12:01 AM, Jun 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-22 00:01:08-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The clock is ticking on a program that has helped thousands of families across Indiana.

Funding for the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program is set to expire in September. Healthy Families Indiana facilitates the program for more than 2,000 families in the state.

Kendra Scott, an engagement specialist with Healthy Families, said the work they do is imperative.

RELATED: Information for Healthy Families Indiana where you live

"It takes a village and we want to be part of that village," Scott said. "We offer them training as it comes child development, connecting socially other parents, community partnerships, networking, resources, linking them to healthcare."

While those things are great, Scott said she also enjoys the little victories.

"I think for me, it's seeing the little small pieces, just those little aha moments, when they recognize, 'Oh I should be on the floor playing and why it's important," Scott said.

Kayla Boyd came to Healthy Families after a divorce. Three years later, she graduated from the program and now works for them. She said she's proof the program works.

"Healthy Families gave me the tools and resources I needed to be self-sufficient," Boyd said. "It sets children up to succeed but also the parents. We're called Health Families for a reason. We're creating healthy families and this funding does just that."

Healthy Families is funded by the federal government under the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program.

In 2020, Healthy Families received a portion of $29.6 million dollars given to Indiana for programs related to maternal and child health. That funding must be reauthorized by Congress by September or it will expire. It'll leave families like Boyd's without the home visits many of them count on over the course of three to five years.

She hopes lawmakers see the success she's had with the program, along with her gratitude, and choose to act before funding expires

WRTV has reached out to Central Indiana's DC Delegation of lawmakers to ask about reauthorizing funding for the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Visiting Program. We have not heard back from anyone yet.