Identification of children and families who may benefit from the Child First intervention may be made by any community-based service provider or by the family itself. This may be through a formal screening process (as may occur in early care and education, or pediatric primary care settings) or through informal identification based on concerns about the child and family. While children may be symptomatic, with behavioral or developmental problems, they may also come from high risk environments and have no current symptoms.
Child First serves families with mental illness, substance abuse, incarceration, domestic violence, and homelessness; some families are undocumented. It is expected that many of the families will have active involvement with child protective services, including children in foster care. Referrals are prioritized based on the urgency of the need.
what people are saying
Child First “integrates cutting edge understanding of brain science within a therapeutic intervention targeted toward the needs of the most vulnerable children and families.”— Jack P. Shonkoff, M.D.
Professor of Pediatrics
Harvard Medical School and Children's Hospital Boston
Director, Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University