A child’s parents, family, family friends and neighbors are critical to his or her development. In order for these significant others to provide the best possible care to the child – or children – whom they love, they need to be recognized for their important roles and supported in them. There need to be robust, comprehensive and culturally-sensitive parenting information and referral systems in place. There need to be easily accessed opportunities to learn how to promote children’s health, development, early learning and general wellbeing. And there need to be mechanisms by which our community’s policies and early learning systems are informed with regular input from children’s parents, family members and caregivers.
One indicator of the degree to which parents are supported in a community is the extent to which pregnant women access first trimester, pre-natal care. This indicator is influenced by a variety of factors but certainly reflects, in part, a community’s underlying attitudes about the value of parenting and of children.
In Walla Walla, 78% of women access first trimester pre-natal care.
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