Partners in Community Outreach recommends the establishment of a statewide system of In-Home Family Education to provide high quality home visiting services to families with young children.
In 2013, the West Virginia Early Childhood Planning Task Force recommended that West Virginia “Phase in evidence-based home visiting programs in every county for families who are expecting or raising young children.” (www.wvecptf.org)
Partners in Community Outreach and others, including the Home Visiting Coalition (http://homevisitingcoalition.com/) are asking that MIECHV be reauthorized for five years with increased funding to reach $800 million annually in order to meet the needs of children and families nationwide. Advocates also stress that the existing flexible structure of the program should remain in place to continue to allow state and local leaders to make the best possible decisions for their own communities.
We are happy to report that West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito has signed on as a co-sponsor to S. 1829, the Senate’s MIECHV reauthorization bill. Senate Bill 1829 is preferred to the bill recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives.
If Congress does not act very soon, West Virginia parents will not get the home visiting services they need to help them do their very best and launch their children on the path to success. Home visiting is a smart, scientifically proven investment that leads to better outcomes for families, kids and communities and significant cost-savings for state budgets over time.
In West Virginia, MIECHV is administered by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WV DHHR) Office of Maternal, Child and Family Health, West Virginia Home Visitation Program. West Virginia currently receives $5,809,290 in MIECHV formula funding. The WV DHHR Bureau for Children and Families receives $1 million of state appropriations for home visiting (In-Home Family Education).
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