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|2011 Annual Report|
Our Position is Strong and Shall Remain Strong
Click here to download a copy of the 2011 Annual Report.
Programs for Parents continues to strive to set the standards for quality in Child Care Resource and Referral Services. We have completed our submission of required documents for accreditation and look forward to being recognized under the newly revised, National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies, Quality Assurance Program. The accreditation process required the participation and engagement of the Board of Directors, staff, stakeholders including child care providers, business and thecommunity. We thank them for their support throughout this process. The New Jersey early care and education system that we have known for over 35 years will be changing. These changes will have a significant impacton our agency, service delivery and the community asa whole. Our goal is to serve as change agents and as such we are developing strategies to implement the new changes. We will champion change by optimizing operations,communicating candidly with staff, providers and parents. We will continue to build talent internally to adjust for change and lastly collaborate with our partners and other stakeholders to get the job done. We anticipate a challenging new year with new possibilities. Our organization is strong programmatically and fiscally and we have competent and committed staff that will usher us into future years of quality service in Essex County.
Child Care Resource and Referral Services: A service available to anyone who needs child care, PfP child care counselors responded to 5,348 phone inquiries last year, offering parents child care options and, if needed,referrals for financial aid. The agency’s staff of experienced counselors introduced parents to a broad range of child care options, from infant to after-school care and enrichment programs. For those summer camps struggling to maintain their programs because of low attendance, PfP held its third annual Summer Camp and Resource Fair where parents hadan opportunity to meet summer camp staff face to face to help them make a more informed decision about their summer care needs.
The Family Child Care Department: Each year, Programs for Parents registered approximately 80 new Family Child Care Providers in Essex County. This is New Jersey’s registration program for individuals who offer home-based child care. A Family Child Care Provider may care forup to five children in her home. Registered providers operate as independent small business owners. PfP trains new providers,helps them get registered with the state, and our inspectors make periodic home visits. Currently, there are over 447 providers on the agency’s roster. PfP held its annual Provider Appreciation Dinner on June 3, 2011. Each year Programs for Parents registered approximately 80 new Family Child Care Providers in Essex County.
Child and Adult Care Food Program: The agency facilitates reimbursements for the Child Care Food Program for Family Child Care Providers in Essex County.There are currently 92 participating child care providers.
Parent Education Department: The agency provides information to parents and providers regarding best practices in child care as well as new techniques, strategies and developments. Parent conferences, parenting skills training and workshops are developed with community agencies to address the needs of families. This year we conducted 50 parent workshops in child carefacilities, schools, and community agencies including on-sitetrainings. We educated over 500 parents on the followingtopics: positive discipline, effective communication, relationship building and stress management.
Information Technology: PfP continues to improve and modernize its technology infrastructure and services over the past year. This includes the installation of a completely new gigabit LAN backbone, redundant high speed internet connections and new firewalls and security software. We also continued to migrate from traditional software to web-based applications which are universally compatible, centrally managed, lower cost and easily deployed.
Child Health Initiatives (CHI): The Programs for Parents’ Child Health Initiatives Departmentbranches off into two areas of services: Child Care Health Consultation Coordination (CCHCC) and New Jersey Child Care Warmline. The CCHCC also provides the following services: Technical Assistance (T/A) and training on health-relatedissues, On-site assessments of health and safety practices of childcare providers, Assistance with development of health policies and procedures, and Assistance with maintenance of health records. During fiscal year 2009/2010 CCHCC provided 26 T/A to child care centers and/or Family Child Care Providers and 49 Workshops/Trainings. The Warmline’s automated system allows access to over 200 recorded health topics 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Questions areanswered directly by pediatric nurse consultants between the hours of 7:30am and 3:30pm., Monday through Friday. Sinceits inception in October, 1999, approximately 16,600 calls have been made.
Educational Services: Over 2,000 child care staff and family child care providers attended PfP-sponsored professional development workshops. In an effort to advance early childhood leadership goals, the agency also sponsored the Director's Academy and the New Jersey Administrator's Credential.
New Jersey First Steps Infant Toddler Initiative: PfP represents seven Northern Region counties by providingtraining, onsite technical assistance, mentoring, coachingand consultation to early educators with the goal of improvingthe quality of Infant/Toddler care in New Jersey. We haveprovided 1009 hours of training to child care center staff andfamily daycare providers throughout the Northern Region.The Infant/Toddler specialists have provided 1405 hours ofon-site consultations to Infant/Toddler programs.
Using the nationally recognized Environmental Rating Scales, 121 ITERS-R for infant/toddler programs and 62 FCCERS-R for family child care programs, have been completed,providing 632 hours of assessing quality in centers and family child care.
Child Care Voucher/Subsidy Services: New Jersey Cares for Kids (NJCK)New Jersey Cares for Kids provides child care subsidy payments for parents who either work or are full-time students andare income-eligible. PfP counselors help parents choose the child care best suited to their needs. NJCK participants pay a portion of their provider’s fee on a sliding scale. Voucher subsidies were issued for 4649 children in 2010.Work First New Jersey (WFNJ)The WFNJ program frees parents on welfare to focus on training to enter the work force. WFNJ participants get counseling on child care options and referrals. Their child care is funded through the WFNJ program. As a result of this program, 2902 children are being cared for while their parents work or are in training.DOE Preschool Wraparound Child CareThe DOE Wraparound program pays for before and after care, for three and four year olds in WRAP child care centers. The WRAP Districts in Essex County are Newark, Irvington, East Orange and Orange. Wrap around subsidies were used by 7535 children in 2010.
Programs for Parents has created a financial road map to address the challenges it will face as a result of the proposed cutbacks in state appropriations. Even while taking austerity measures, PfP's future is bright. Our goals include expansion of our Early Care and Education professional development, as well as our vocational and training services. We are creating partnerships with local colleges and universities to support for-credit educational opportunities, where we can share services and activities focusing on the early childhood community. PfP will continue to focus on working with parents to equip them with the skills and resources to support their children and their families.