Head Start program to be available in Sabetha
NEK-CAP, Inc., announced Tuesday, July 18, that it had been awarded a federal grant through a competitive grants process to continue Early Head Start and Head Start services in the counties of Atchison, Brown, Jackson, Jefferson, Leavenworth, Marshall, Nemaha and Pottawatomie counties and Early Head Start in Doniphan County.
Early Head Start and Head Start are funded with five-year grants through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The agency uses a review process called Designation Renewal System (DRS) to determine whether Early Head Start and Head Start providers are offering high-quality services to the families enrolled in the program. Programs meeting program guidelines receive the grants without competing for the funding.
Programs proving inadequate must compete with other agencies for funding to provide Early Head Start and Head Start in their area. NEK-CAP, Inc. was among those competing for funding due to low CLASS scores and not providing satisfactory supervision for children.
NEK-CAP, Inc., submitted a grant application for $4,883,847 in federal funding and $1,220,962 in non-federal share to HHS on Nov. 19, 2018 for the five-year grant period beginning July 1, 2019. A grantee is only awarded 80 percent of the total funding to operate a program and the other 20 percent of funding (non-federal share) is the communities’ portion of the funding. NEK-CAP, Inc., can receive cash donations, volunteer hours, and other material donations as non-federal share.
Early Head Start and Head Start are available at no cost to children birth to 5 years old whose families live at a 100 percent of poverty, which for example a family of four would be at $25,750 annually. The program serves foster children, children with disabilities, and children from homeless families. Most families in the NEK-CAP, Inc. service area qualify based on income eligibility.
Head Start offers a preschool experience for children 3- to 5-years-old to gain school readiness goals and be prepared to enter Kindergarten. Atchison County will have three classrooms; Brown County will have two classrooms – Horton and Hiawatha; Jackson County will have three classrooms; Jefferson, Marshall, Nemaha – Sabetha – and Pottawatomie counties will have one classroom. We are opening a new center in Sabetha. Each of these classrooms will be five days a week for 6-1/2 hours. Leavenworth County will have two classrooms and Nemaha County will have one classroom in Seneca. These three classrooms will be part day for 3-1/2 hours a day.
Families in Head Start receives support through Family Development Advocacy – families gain a sense of healthy self-reliance. This component of the program builds on the families’ strengths and become increasingly capable of taking responsibility for managing their own lives within their community
NEK-CAP, Inc.’s Early Head Start program is a home-based program meeting with families weekly for 90 minutes and has two socialization opportunities monthly. The home-based program is comprehensive including child development and supporting the family through Family Development Advocacy.
Early Head Start and Head Start offers education on health, oral health, and mental health, also provides health and nutrition services to children and families enrolled in the program. NEK-CAP, Inc. offers several additional programs including homeless prevention, Housing Choice Voucher and Family Self-Sufficiency program.
NEK-CAP, Inc. Early Head Start and Head Start is excited to continue services to all the children and families residing in our service area.