A primary funding source of the home visiting program in Washington State is the federal Maternal, Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting Program, MIECHV. Since 2010, Washington has received several formula and competitive grants to both fund existing programs and expand the programs reach across the state.
Starting in 2010, Washington State was awarded $1.3 million in a formula grant to develop an Updated State Plan for home visiting in the state to identify the following benchmarks:
- Improvements in maternal and prenatal health, infant health, and child health and development
- Increased school readiness.
- Reduction in the incidence of child maltreatment.
- Improved parenting related to child development outcomes.
- Improved socio-economic status.
- Greater coordination of referrals to community resources and supports.
- Reduced crime and domestic violence.
This plan was created in partnership with the Washington State Department of Health. Currently DCYF and DOH are working together to once again map out a revised State Plan to ensure that we continue on a successful home visiting trajectory.
Through that original grant, Washington receives $1.8 million annually to support direct home visitation services in local communities, to develop systems to build quality implementation of evidence-based home visiting, to integrate home visiting as a strategy in a comprehensive statewide system for early childhood services, and to collaborate with and partner across agencies and throughout communities.
In addition, Washington has successfully applied for several other highly competitive grants, competing with states and agencies across the country. Washington is one of 10 states that received a competitive federal grant in April 2012 to expand voluntary home visiting services to families in some of the state’s most at-risk communities. Through 2015, Washington received about $25 million from the MIECHV program. In that first year, $6.6 million directly supported 545 families in some of the state’s most at-risk communities.
Washington also recently won the competitive Innovation Grant award, partnering with Alaska, Idaho and Oregon to aid in the development and retention of a trained, highly skilled home visiting workforce across our region, creating and utilizing a workforce study across the region, incorporating reflective supervision, infant mental health training with a focus on supporting families dealing with substance abuse, behavioral health challenges and domestic violence.