December 2018 - FAB Meeting #8

December 12, 2018 from 6-8pm

Attendance

UB backbone staff present: David Harrington, Kassa Belay, Dionne Grayman, Jason Ludwig

Number of FAB members present: 20/25

Visitors: Darrah Sipe, Yale MOMS Partnership

Accomodations: Potluck dinner, childcare provided

Presentation/Agenda

Notes

Objectives:

  • Reflect on/ Celebrate FAB efforts since Meeting 1 (5/24)

  • Define what success looks like for Social Emotional & Language Development for 0-3 year olds in Brownsville

Introductions/Welcomes:

  • Potluck Dinner

Icebreaker: Name one expectation you had when joining the FAB, and name one expectation for 2019.

At the beginning I expected…

·     Full commitment from UB staff and FAB members to implementing projects

·      To develop a full understanding of the project

·      To drift away from the FAB after a while, but I ended up falling in love with the entire UB initiative.

·      To meet other parents

·      To be part of something beautiful

·      To see if programs can come together to help Brownsville

·      To be part of something improving Brownsville

·      To be part of a planning process reshaping parent-child relationships

·      To start new routes for growth

·      To meet new people and grow as a person

·      To grow new partnerships

·      To do something for Brownsville

·      To hear other parents’ experience with the education system

·      To work with children, and to promote learning outside of schools

·      To share resources

·      To be part of a dynamic group

·      To learn more about non-profits

·      That people would be interested

·      That UB would operate differently from other project in Brownsville, by incorporating the community in decision making

·      To change the narrative

My expectations for 2019 are…

·      To move forward with the DTB projects

·      To tell other families in the neighborhoods about the DTB projects

·      To implement projects

·      To maintain our momentum

·      To leave a legacy for my grandchildren

·      To continue enjoying the process

·      To learn new ideals of collaboration

·      To plan and start new projects

·      To see UB grow

·      To put all of our hard work into place

·      To see DTB resources all around Brownsville

·      To see the DTB projects flourish

·      To see more fathers in FAB meetings

·      To pass on information about UB to other families in the neighborhood

·      To Bring our goals to life

·      To Lift off

UB Updates

  • In funding renewal meeting with UB Directors, Robin Hood Foundation was especially impressed with FAB participation in UB work

  • Staffing Update: Resources have been shifted towards bringing in a Project Manager and Books for Brownsville Consultant to help with implementing DTB projects in 2019

Darrah Sipe’s Presentation on MOMS at Yale Child Study Center

  • MOMS, an initiative of the Yale Child Study Center, seeks to improve mental health issues faced by over-burdened, under-resourced mothers, thereby strengthening generations of families to flourish and succeed.

    • Incorporates equitable/participatory approach through hiring and training Community mental health ambassadors

    • MOMS is looking to begin work in New York City. Looking at brownsville as a possible Neighborhood

TOC to Aspirations Activity:

  • The PAT has now offered their contributions to the TOC, which can best be viewed in the attached presentation.

  • Turning these aspirations into outcomes:

FAB definitions of success can focus on:

  • The relationships children and families have with peers, family members, neighbors, professionals etc.

  • The settings children and families frequent. I.e. childcare, libraries, doctor’s office, home, in the neighborhood, on public transportation, etc.

  • The circumstances/situations children and families are often in, particularly those that can be tense. I.e. Getting into a carseat, a temper tantrum at a supermarket, sitting in the waiting room, etc.

From Theory of Change to Aspirations Activity: The below are results from small group work designed to elicit specific changes families would like to see in the community and outcomes that might help us measure how effectively those changes are happening because of UB’s work.

Group 1

  • What does A Strong Support Network mean for the way infants and toddlers learn to speak and read?

    • It means pulling resources and information from different community organizations to foster infant SE&L development. It also means sharing these resources amongst ourselves, with the wider community

  • What does Empowerment mean for the way infants and toddlers form relationships with other children and adults?

    • It means that children learn to develop their skills in interacting with other persons.

  • What does Accessibility  look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • It means that providers reach out to families, offering information about free and low-cost programming

  • What does A Family Focus mean for the way Brownsville looks through the eyes of an infant or toddler?

    • It means educating the community on why the ages of 0-3 are so crucial in a child’s development, and why fostering high quality childcare and family bonding is important for children’s future development.

Group 2

  • What does Accountability  look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • It means that parents hold themselves accountable for attaining more information and help when necessary. This ranges from seeking resources for infant development to professional help with mental health struggles.

  • What does Changing the Narrative  look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • It means that service providers do not operate in their interactions with families with assumptions that trivialize/marginalize the stress and struggles that families face. Instead of censuring families, providers should ask “how can we help?” This entails identifying and seeking solutions for the root causes of stress in the families they serve.

      • Here a FAB member who works as a teacher shared an experience from her workplace.  The mother of a child with behavior problems came to the school, and it was plainly clear that she was dealing with an overwhelming amount of stress. She expressed the feeling of being unable to cope with the pressures on her. FAB members discussed how the child’s behavior likely was a reflection of the stress felt by his mother, and that a multi-generational approach to combating mental health/toxic stress issues (similar to MOMs) would benefit the family.

  • What does Cultural Relevance look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • It means that providers receive intercultural sensitivity training that offers strategies for interacting with families in Brownsville with diverse cultural backgrounds, some of whom may have different expectations of service providers.

  • What does Changing the narrative mean for the way the way Brownsville looks through the eyes of an infant or toddler?

    • It means seeing Brownsville as a village full of families--families that can dream and realize their dreams. It means that parents have to start to dream bigger. Dream a different narrative and make it a reality. Make hope a lasting state of mind and be the change you want to see. This starts with parents treating themselves and their children in a manner that reflects their aspirations--talking to, reading with, and playing with their children. Example given was the “3,000 word gap”(3 million word gap)--remediating this gap requires that parents develop the mindset that they should take time to engage their children in conversations that utilize a wider vocabulary.

Group 3

  • What does Accountability mean for the way infants and toddlers learn to speak and read?

    • It means that adults are mindful of their own words and hold themselves accountable for the tone of voice they use when speaking with their children.  

  • What does Accountability mean for the way infants and toddlers form relationships with other children and adults?

    • It means that families seek out opportunities to expose their children to books, videos, and games that are age appropriate, culturally relevant and that encourage positive development.

  • What does Accountability  look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • One Word: Respect.

  • What does  Accountability mean for the way the way Brownsville looks through the eyes of an infant or toddler?

    • It means building safer, healthier, more prosperous communities

Group 4

  • What does Equity mean for the way the way Brownsville looks through the eyes of an infant or toddler?

    • It means making a child’s education and  social, emotional and language development a priority from conception. And also providing resources to achieve success in these regards.

  • What does Opportunity mean for the way infants and toddlers learn to speak and read?

    • It means recognizing that there are many educational opportunities within the family home. This requires encouraging parents to be their children’s first teachers, and ensuring that parents have the necessary resources and opportunities to ensure that children thrive.

  • What does a Full Family Focus look like for the way service providers interact with the families they serve?

    • It looks like  recognition of the full support system behind a child’s struggles or successes. Children’s behavior often reflects difficulties and stresses faced by caretakers within the home.

Other Comments:

  • Changing the Narrative means being goal oriented and laser-focused on what is important and how we can achieve change

Survey results

None administered

FABDavid Harrington