Some families in Michiana will soon have extra support thanks to a program through Goodwill Industries.
The Nurse-Family Partnership Program is specifically for low-income, first-time mothers in Elkhart, St. Joseph and LaPorte counties. Registered nurses with the program will do home visits throughout a pregnancy and until a child’s second birthday.
The idea is to give mothers extra support, education and guidance to create better outcomes. Nurse-Family Partnership programs exist all across the country, but this is the first one in these counties.
“St. Joe, Elkhart and LaPorte county continue to be ranked in the top 10 high risk counties for Indiana for infant mortality," said Dawn Wilkins the Nurse Supervisor with Goodwill. "So there was always a need here for nurse-family partnerships there just wasn’t always an implementing agency.”
Wilkins said beyond pregnancy and children the program is also designed to help with education, job placement, housing, transportation and other needs the mothers or other family members may have.
Women can refer themselves to the program by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 574-472-7378, or be referred by their doctor or clinic.