Agencies come together to provide
valuable education and resources
Parents as Teachers
spotlight: Eli's family.
Offering families a place to share their stories.
On March 21, 2018 an incredible of group of agencies in Southern West Virginia held their first “Creating Strong Families” conference at the Armory in Welch, WV. The coalition consists of:
Karen Wilson of The Community Crossing Parents as Teachers
Morgan McKinney of CASE WV Right From The Start
Tammy Fleshman of Mountainheart Birth to Three
Annetta Tiller of Unicare
Jordan Pruett of Aetna
William Lawrence of Maximus
Sharon Waldron of Tug River
Kathy Strong of Headstart
Paul Orten of KVC
Debra Elmore of Reconnecting McDowell
Our featured guest speaker, Gayle Manchin, was unable to participate due to weather. We were disappointed but Mrs. Manchin has been very supportive of the coalition’s work. We are hoping that she will be able to attend our next event.
The one day conference included 6 workshops and 35 vendors. The 6 workshops were:
Behavioral Challenges in Children – Dr. Joy Winfree of Tug River Medical
Keeping Yourself Healthy – Dr. Joanna Bailey of Tug River Medical
Optimal Infant Nutrition - Morgan McKinney of CASE WV
Healthy Teeth and Gums from DAY ONE – Sam Bever, DDS
Protecting your Financial Identity – Pioneer Bank
Fatherhood Panel –
Jay Wilson, The Community Crossing
Charles Barton, Super Dad
William Lawrence, Maximus
Kyler Wilson, The Community Crossing
"You can’t pick your parents
but you can pick your child’s parent.
- Fatherhood Panel
Supporting Parents of Children with Autism
The Community Crossing is partnering with Circle of Parents to provide our community a much needed resource for those with family members affected by autism spectrum disorder, sensory processing disorder, or those who may not have a diagnosis yet but are looking for information.
A recent government survey suggests that one in every 45 children ages 3 to 17 are affected with autism spectrum disorder and through our work with families in our community we have noticed this trend. We have been frustrated because we recognize that these families need support but have no place to refer families to go to get the support they need. In fact, two employees of The Community Crossing have children on the spectrum and were looking for support as well, and that's when another employee suggested that we start a support group ourselves.
Our vision is to offer these families a place to share their stories so they don't feel alone as well as offer information about autism and resources in the state of West Virginia.
Early on in the planning of this group we realized that it is often difficult to find a babysitter especially when you have a child that has special needs. We wanted these families to be able to come and get the support that they need so we decided that we would encourage them to bring their children with them. We are currently making sensory stations for the children to explore which may help to relieve some anxiety for the children thus relieving some anxiety for their parents as well.
The sensory stations are also a great way to illustrate to the parents ways to help teach their children some self-regulating skills and that it isn't a great expense to do this at home.
Each monthly meeting we will introduce a new topic as well. The topic for March was recognizing your child's triggers so you be proactive in preventing meltdowns.
This effort represents a bold response to a great need in our community. Please let us know if you are interested in providing support for this initiative, or call The Community Crossing at (304) 436-8300
100th Visit Celebration!
The Community Crossing’s Parents As Teachers program has been a part of Eli’s parent’s proactive parenting since Brandy was a few months pregnant. The parenting journey can be difficult and early on Brandy and Justin sought help to equip themselves to be the best parents that they could be.
Brandy and Justin actively participated in home visits every other week to learn as much as they could from the researched-based curriculum that Parents as Teachers offers. If you asked Brandy today, she could show you the two full binders of handouts, and information she collected that helped them in their parenting journey. The binder also serves as a journal of Eli’s development starting when she was 3 months pregnant, through his birth, his infant months, toddler years and transition into school!
Justin is a great example of an active father, participating in as many home visits as he is able to. They both eagerly try the practical, developmentally-based activities with Eli at each visit and observe how they can best help him and challenge him to achieve the next milestone. Reading books did not come naturally to them as parents, however, they accepted the challenge to create a love for books and learning in Eli, starting when he was just an infant. At age 5, Eli has grasped that love for learning and has made a smooth transition to school and is loving it!
Here is a family that recognized that more help is better when it comes to raising children. PAT offers connections with resources to help families, group connection play groups and events, early detection screenings and researched-based information on child development, parenting topics such as toilet training, temper tantrums and proper nutrition. The Community Crossing also has a Baby Pantry, that can be accessed with Baby Bucks earning free baby items, diapers, etc. The PAT program is a free and voluntary resource for families with young children, prenatal through the child’s transition to school.
We rejoice with parents like Brandy and Justin who embrace and appreciate local resources such as Parents as Teachers and see the benefits to give their child the best start in life!
Congratulations Brandy, Justin and Eli on your 100th home visit!
The Community Crossing can do so much more with your help. We are very fortunate to have the Parents As Teachers grant through WV DHHS, however the grant does not cover the cost of our key supportive ministries:
Home repairs to ensure children have a safe environment
Black Diamond boxing club to encourage fitness and discipline in youth
Men's basketball and other community sports for all ages
Support and resources for entrepreneurs in our county
Healing for drug and alcohol addiction - presently we are praying for the development of an effective ministry
CCX Missional Magazine covering McDowell County in monthly issues
Would you prayerfully consider giving
$30, $50 or $100 per month
in support of Community Crossing?