Advisory board members and neighborhood leaders gathered together on Saturday, November 15th to vote on a prioritized policy agenda for Growing Up Healthy. The result of the meeting was a list of issues, strategies and activities that GUH will consider priorities in working towards systems change over the next year or so.
At the top of the list was meeting with newly elected officials to make sure they know what Growing Up Healthy is all about. Utilizing this strategy, we hope to build relationships with our elected officials that will lead to more movement on the issues we care about most.
The top issue of concern was connecting child care providers – particularly those who are considered family, friend and neighbor providers (caring for children in their homes, legally though not licensed) – with more resources. We plan to partner with the Early Childhood Initiatives in both Northfield and Faribault to help make this happen. Hopefully our neighborhood leaders can help provide access to a network of care providers who are not currently receiving any form of support.
Other issues that are on our priority list include mental health, transportation, and safety features in the targeted neighborhoods. We also intend to continue creating and building a comprehensive map/listing of services and resources for families in the county. This map will be in multiple languages and multiple media to provide access to the highest number of residents possible.