The Partnership collaborates at the state and county level to align funding, priorities, regulations, outcome measures, and implementation – across sectors and jurisdictions to create a strong family well-being system that supports families.
By aligning our work and learning from and with one another, we can significantly reduce child fatalities and child maltreatment for all children zero to five by positively and proactively supporting strong and healthy family formation.
Just as tending a garden requires various tools and nutrients, fostering family well-being requires many different resources.
Quality education, clear career pathways, and economic assets are essential, as are physical and mental health.
Social capital – helpful connections to people, information, and opportunities to both give and receive support – may be intangible, but it is still critical for well-being.
The results of a united and comprehensive effort across multiple systems are healthy parents with family-supporting jobs, healthy children meeting developmental milestones, and better-connected individuals able to participate in civic and family life.
- Colorado has one of the highest rates of low birth weight births in the country at about 9%; but as high as 26% in some counties;
- 27.3% of women felt consistently down, depressed, or hopeless since their baby was born;
- An estimated 54,000 parents in Colorado reported that they felt aggravation from parenting usually or always in the past month. On the 2017-2018 National Survey of Children’s Health, over 10,000 Colorado parents admitted that they didn’t think they were handling the day-to-day demands of raising children well, and 1 in 5 parents stated they did not have anyone to turn to for day to day emotional support with raising children;
- Colorado has seen a 12% increase in the number of children that were victims of first-time child maltreatment in the past five years; and
- Of Colorado child maltreatment fatalities in State Fiscal Year 2017-2018, 52.9% of children were under the age of one and 82.4% were under the age of five.
In addition, there is an important need to increase the capacity of state and local governments to implement and scale up effective interventions that can reduce child abuse and neglect.
Where is the best place to find resources for the children and families I am working with?
Colorado Crisis Services
We provide free, confidential, professional and immediate support for any mental health, substance use or emotional concern, 24/7/365.
Call 1-844-493-TALK (8255) or text TALK to 38255 to speak to a trained professional.
Colorado’s call line for general questions about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), providing answers in many languages including English, Spanish (Español), Mandarin (普通话) and more.
Call 303-389-1687 or (877) 462-2911
This is a quick reference guide to resources that professionals have highlighted during the town hall conversations, as well as frequently asked questions and answers, by topic.
If you can not find a resource that was mentioned in a discussion, we encourage you to visit online Stay At Home CO Guide full of free resources, support and activities to help you, your family, your loved ones, as well as the children and families you serve during this time. That website, which is regularly updated by the State of Colorado based on your suggestions, is the best place to find resources online during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Resources for Keeping Families Strong during COVID-19
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Partnership hosted regular Keeping Families Strong during COVID-19 calls to provide a space for family-strengthening professionals across Colorado to discuss successes and challenges, share resources, and collaborate to problem-solve the challenges associated with supporting families during the COVID-19 pandemic. A compilation of many of the resources shared during these calls can be found below.
- Bright by Text provides free tips, information, and resources to help all parents and caregivers give every child a bright beginning.
- VROOM Brain Building activities is a great free tool for families with young children, ages 0-5
- HIPPY International is enabling free downloads of their parent-child activity books, which include two weeks worth of activities to do with children ages 3-4.
- ABC Mouse has online reading, math, science, and art curriculum for children ages 2-8
- Science Experiments:
- Schoology has tools for preparing for distance learning
- Khan Academy is an incredible resource for online learning content for all ages
- Photomathis currently free until the end of May and shows steps to solve the problem.
- 1,000 Free Hours is a platform where college students are offering tutoring to K-12 students.
- Online learning information from Estes Park School District
- Here is an article about free online learning tools for kids
The Colorado Department of Human Services Office of Economic Security burial assistance program provides payments to providers for burial and cremation services of low-income Coloradans.
- Burial benefits are used to cover reasonable and necessary costs for burial services.
- The maximum 2020 Burial grant is $1500.
- A person must have been receiving public assistance and/or medical assistance at the time of death.
- Public assistance for the purposes of the burial benefit is: Colorado Works (CW), Medicaid and/or Adult Financial (AF) programs. AF programs include:
- Old Age Pension (OAP)
- Aid to the Needy Disabled State Only (AND-SO) or
- AND Colorado Supplement (AND-CS)
- The total cost of the burial or cremation services cannot exceed $2500.
- The person’s assets and assistance from the family members are considered.
- Payment for the burial or cremation services is made directly to the provider(s) of the service.
- Determines eligibility and processes applications for the program.
- Enters and tracks cases in the Colorado Benefits Management System (CBMS).
- Establishes statewide program policy in consultation with the State Board of Human Services and provides county departments with technical assistance, training and consultation.
- Regional Representatives monitor the program which assists in determining if training or process evaluation may be needed.
- The burial assistance program is funded through the Old Age Pension Burial Reimbursement appropriation of $918,364 cash funds and Aid to the Needy Disabled Burial Reimbursement appropriation of $508,000.
- COVID Emergency Child Care Collaborative: Child care will be available potentially free of charge for caregivers working in essential services.
- Easter Seals may be able to provide respite care.
- Clayton Early Learning is reopening care on June 1st.
- KinderCare has remained open the whole time, following strict protocols on ratios, cleaning, etc.
- Promises for Children Facebook page is focusing heavily on child care issues related to COVID-19.
TANF program is available for things that SNAP does not cover.
Q. Will work requirements for this be waived?
A. No, but at a county level, we are able to interact and see if there is ‘good cause’ for people not being able to meet this requirement.
- Food Access Resource Document
- Regional Food Banks have moved to a zero-cost model for members, which means that there should not be a charge for food purchases, and in most areas, there should not be a cost for the delivery of food from the regional food banks.
- The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TFAP) has a large order of food that will be delivered this week to TFAP sites.
- Local counties can now purchase food for their residents and have it reimbursed from FEMA Public Assistance at 75% of the cost. This request needs to be coordinated with the local emergency management partners, but it is a way that locals can gauge their own needs and fill that locally.
- For Family Resource Centers with limited volunteers, the governor’s office has received an outpouring of offers to volunteer, and Help Colorado Now has a database of 10,000 volunteers.
- A Crisis Cleanup Hotline (800-451-1954) was launched this week. The website states that “If you are at high risk of COVID-19, you may request food delivery or other services. We will connect you with volunteers (where available) who may be able to help with meals and shopping delivery, medical necessities, such as wellness checks and prescription pick-ups, and pet supplies, such as food.”
- Grants to Feed Kids – If you’re feeding children and families affected by the coronavirus, Share Our Strength is here to help. Schools and workplaces are closing nationwide due to coronavirus. Vulnerable children are losing the school meals they depend on, and low-income families are struggling with lost wages. We’re offering emergency grants to support local school districts and nonprofit organizations in their efforts to ensure kids get the nutritious food they need. Please visit the website to complete a brief information form, and their grants team will be in touch with instructions if your organization is eligible for funding.
- Colorado Blueprint To End Hunger issued 74 grants from the first cycle of funding and they will soon issue a second cycle COVID-19 Emergency Hunger Relief Fund.
Ideas for ways to stay connected while socially isolated
Without physical contact, creating some kind of shared experience seems crucial. Eating at the same time, reading a book, watching the same show, exploring a virtual museum, etc. Here are some articles and resources on this topic:
- Embracing Virtual Connection Due to Social Distancing
- Tips for Video Chatting with Young Children – Staying Connected While Far Apart
- FaceTime can help babies connect with long-distance relatives
- Games to Play over Facetime
- 21 Fun games to play over Facetime or Skype calls
- Online Conversation Games to Play with Grandkids
- 15 Cool Games to Play over Facetime or Skype Calls
- 19 Fun activities and ideas for talking over the phone!
Physical, mental, and behavioral health and social support resources
- “Help Needed in Denver Metro COVID-19” Facebook Group
- “Working and Learning from Home During the COVID-19 Outbreak” From the American Academy of Pediatrics
- Colorado Early Learning & Development Guidelines can be Found at https://earlylearningco.org/
- The center for relationship education is hosting ‘marriage mondays online‘ to teach practical skills for strengthening connections during covid-19 and beyond.
- Parent to parent of colorado supports families of children with disabilities and special heatlh care needs and is providing group and individual peer support in both english and spanish.
- Circle of parents provides a variety of online groups for parents to connect with each other.
- “Supporting young children during covid-19” flyer from the office of early childhood
- Natural highs in boulder focuses mostly on youth in recovery, and they are providing virtual support groups and resources.
- Boulder County’s ‘Home Together’ campaign is a central web platform where parents can share challenges, tools, tips, music, recipes, etc
- Adelante JeffCo hosts a daily Circulo Comunitario (Community Circle), a community navigators warmline, and Grupo de Apoyo JeffCo (a group for families with children with special needs) in Spanish. More information on Adelante’s efforts during COVID-19 can be found here.
- Bright By Text provides information (in English and Spanish) on child development, plus, local events and resources for parents and caregivers of children prenatal to age eight. Families can sign up by texting ‘greatchildhoods’ to 274448.
- Family Resource Centers are providing emergent basic needs and not requiring documentation
- A list of COVID-19 resources for undocumented communities can be found here
- United We Dream has information about healthcare access for undocumented folks in the time of COVID-19
Wi-fi/smartphone data resources
- XFINITY is offering free hotspots
- Charter Communications will offer free access to broadband for 60 days to households with k-12 and/or college students
- AT&T is removing data caps associated with their wireless and wired connections (see “customer offers”)
- Comcast is increasing access and speeds to their internet essentials program ($10/month broadband); new families get 60 days free
- T-Mobile is supporting k-12 school districts with a distance learning program
- A list of technology supports compiled by the office of early childhood can be found here.
Resources for translating anti-racism into action
Recursos en Español (resources in Spanish)
Colorado thrives when families thrive
The Colorado Partnership for Thriving Families aims to accelerate past, current, and ongoing statewide prevention efforts by strengthening and supporting young families.
If we think of a family like a community garden, it takes a group of people working together to help the garden grow and thrive. The Partnership is continually working to enrich the garden, in this case by expanding and intentionally fostering broad cross-sector coalitions that include health care, housing, public health, community-based organizations, philanthropic partners, and others who share our vision and are committed to improving child well-being. Together, we can work with families to provide the conditions and nutrients for our garden to thrive.