Grant funding supports Smart Start education for new parents.
With a focus on building stronger communities by building stronger families,
the Parenting Cottage and Covenant Children’s are offering free parent education classes
each month through September.
Smart Start is a series of four one-hour classes from noon to 1 p.m. on
the first Tuesdays of June, July, August and September, hosted at Covenant
Children’s, 4000 24th St. Once the series has concluded, it will start over with the first session topic.
“Being a new parent can be both exciting and challenging,”
said Carla Olson, executive director of the Parenting Cottage. “Our
partnership with Covenant Children’s is about supporting new parents
as they begin their journey. We are focusing on keys areas that parents
will encounter during the first 12-18 months of parenting—social
emotional development, developmental milestones, safe and healthy environments
for children and age appropriate positive discipline.”
- Your Child’s Developing Personality and Emotions (June 7)
- Milestones and Realistic Expectations (July 5)
- Creating a Safe Environment for your Child (Aug. 7)
- Positive Discipline and Parenting (Sept. 6)
Funding for the classes comes from Project HOPES (Healthy Outcomes through
Prevention & Early Support), a program developed by the Texas Department
of Prevention and Early Intervention Services, which provides multiple
areas of wrap-around services to support families with children prenatal
to age five. Lubbock County was chosen for funding as one of only seven
counties in the State of Texas. The ultimate goal is to provide guidance
to families on normal child development and to provide ongoing support
to parents in the critical first years of a child’s life.
Lucas Divine, Covenant Children’s project manager, agrees with Olson.
“Parents often have little to no parenting experience prior to leaving
the hospital and are thrust into parenting on a 24/7 basis,” Divine
said. “Parenting doesn’t have to be a learn-as-you-go approach.
This partnership with Parenting Cottage better equips caregivers with
the knowledge and confidence they need to raise healthy and successful
Olson said the more a parent learns about early childhood development,
the more each parent can be actively involved in helping their child learn and grow.
“We are so glad to have Covenant Children’s as a partner as
we work to provide support that encourages healthy babies and healthy
families,” she said.