Thursday, April 5, 2012

Update on the Rural Early Year's Coalition

Rural Early Year’s Coalition

REYC is a working group of partners striving to improve the lives of families and children in the rural Saskatoon Health Region.

REYC Principles:

  1. to understand the assets and opportunities for children aged 0-6 years and their families who live in rural Saskatoon Health Region.
  2. to honour the context of children’s lives; understanding the influence of families and communities in their health and wellbeing.
  3. to work holistically.
  4. to recognize that the committee’s focus may change over time, based on an ongoing analysis of rural communities’ assets and opportunities.

Current Active Members of REYC Steering Committee:

Pam Woodsworth, chair, KidsFirst Saskatoon
Sydney Bell, convener and Community Developer, KidsFirst

Fred Ozirney, RIC
Darcy Wojcichowsky, Public Health Services
Collette Leismeister, Partners for Rural Family Support, Humboldt
Darrell Proposki, Horizon School Division
Randy Robinson, Primary Health
Betty Nippi-Allbright, Primary Health
Rosemary Beckie, Ministry of Educaiton
Trish Reeve, Prairie Spirit School Division
Terry Ann Keenan, KidsFirst Saskatoon
Jenna Harder, Rural Parent Mentoring Program

REYC Four Priority Areas

Healthy Eating, Active Living
-partnered to host baby food making workshops in rural communities
-linking with Parent Mentoring Program

Service Accessibility
-hosted focus groups with service providers and parents in rural communities to explore how parents with young children living in rural areas experience accessing services for their family

Early Learning and Care
-working with two rural communities to establish licensed childcare spaces

Poverty Busters
-connections to Saskatoon Anti-Poverty coalition and Poverty Free Saskatchewan

KidsFirst Regional Community Development:

Across the province, the KidsFirst Regional Community Development work takes place in a variety of ways. This variety in programs and approaches for the KidsFirst Regional work results from the differing populations and needs of the regions across the province, as well as different accountability structures in each region for the Regional Community Development work.

A provincial KidsFirst evaluation has resulted in four directives guiding the work of KidsFirst Community Development.

Ø Increase awareness of, and prevention activities to reduce incidence of FASD.

Ø Increase enrolment in prenatal classes, medical care during pregnancy, ensuring accessible and culturally relevant programming.

Ø Increase parent knowledge and confidence through parenting resources and information.

Ø Enhance community development through evidence (EDI and IHBQ).

Latest Activities:

REYC Advisory gathering at Sunset Estate in November 2011, which included a presentation about Developmental Assets and the Child Health Status Report as well as a group activity identifying possible actions in the four priority areas. Data from parent and service provider focus groups on Service Accessibility was accessed and drove our planning in that area.

REYC has been utilizing social media to make community connections including. These efforst include a regular e-bulletin and Rural Early Year’s Coalition Facebook page:

Next steps

-Steering Committee to meet this spring to develop concrete action plan based on input from Advisory Gathering.

-Continue to promote the 40 Developmental Assets framework with workshops.

-working with two rural communities to support the development of licensed childcare centres.

-potential plans include hosting a pre-natal health fair and engaging in a public awareness campaign of the 40 Developmental Assets.

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