Home and Group Visits
Coordinators provide weekly and periodic in-service training to increase the knowledge, confidence, and effectiveness of the home visitors.
Home visits are the key to the HIPPY program, but the relationships that are formed during these times are supported through group meetings. Group meetings and home visits work together to balance the learning experiences for the parent and child.
Group meetings allow parents to come together and share their experiences. Parents are strongly encouraged to attend the bi-weekly group meetings, leaving the -all too common- isolation of the home and in doing so, learn from and teach one another.
The first hour of the group meeting is used to discuss the previous week's activities and to role-play the subsequent week's activity. In the second hour, parents engage in enrichment activities, which involve issues related to parenting, employment, school/community/social services, and personal growth.
The objective for the enrichment activity (topics are selected by the parents) is to provide the training and knowledge that will allow parents to be more effective as parents and as members of the community, more self-assured and more self-reliant.
Childcare provided during the group meeting allows for social interactions for the children. Many programs include Parent and Child Time (PACT) as a component. This often becomes a time when parents can observe and develop alternative methods of child rearing.
Home visitation is a valuable service-delivery method, reaching parents where they are and working to build lasting relationships that strengthen the family. Home visiting is an effective, research-based and cost-efficient way to bring families and resources together to ensure that children grow up healthy and ready to learn. When combined with group meetings, HIPPY families are surrounded with a support system that allows the child and parent to achieve their full potential.