Joy Jackson is a graduate student in UNC’s Master of Public Administration program and a CCP intern working in Lenoir and Caswell Counties.
This summer, CCP will be working with the Caswell County Partnership for Children to design and implement a community needs assessment. The assessment aims to uncover the current needs of families who qualify for their Smart Start program, a public-private initiative that provides early education funding to all of the North Carolina’s 100 counties. Smart Start funds are used to improve the quality of child care, make child care more affordable and accessible, provide access to health services and offer family support.
CCP will work with the Partnership’s Board of Directors, Executive Director and Program Evaluator to create an assessment tool to measure the childcare related needs of Caswell County families. Some of the demographic groups targeted may include local families with children 5 years of age and younger, child care providers in Caswell and surrounding counties, the local medical community and families of children with health problems and/or developmental delays. The Partnership will then use the information to determine how closely their programs are currently aligning with local needs. The information will also help the Partnership determine what changes/additions need to be made to their programs to ensure that they continue to benefit to the community.
Since the Caswell County Partnership for Children began, more than 2000 families have been provided local Child Care Resource and Referral, and more than 100 families each year have received assistance with child care costs. The Partnership has also improved the quality of child care, as well as access to high quality child care for all families. Over 100 new child care spaces have been created in licensed child care facilities, with 11 child care facilities receiving quality improvement grants to upgrade their facilities.
This project is part of a continuing relationship between the Community-Campus Partnership and the Caswell County Partnership for Children. Over the past year, CCP also supported a photovoice project developed and recently completed by graduate students from UNC’s School of Public Health and youth affiliated with the Partnership. More information about the photovoice project can be found here.