What is Early Head Start?
Durham Early Head Start (DEHS) is a federally-funded, free, and comprehensive child development and family support program for low-income expectant women and families with infants and toddlers age birth to 3. Families participate through two program models: home visiting where quality educational experiences and strategies are shared with families and children in their home. As well as full day high-quality center-based child care. Currently, DEHS serves 136 children through center-based care and 36 children through home visiting, for a total enrollment of 172.
All families receive high-quality, comprehensive services, including: education; health, dental, and nutritional aid; housing assistance and parent education; mental health screenings; and early intervention.
The Partnership collaborates with community partners to serve Durham’s most vulnerable children and families: ; the Center for Child & Family Health provides home visiting services; and local child care centers provide center-based care.
Center-Based Services: for families who demonstrate need for child care services
- Children receive between 6.5 to 10 hours each day per-year child care in one of our partnering centers.
- Early Head Start teachers and staff provide a nurturing, stimulating and individualized learning environment.
- Family Service Coordinators meet individually with parents to provide information, resources and support.
- Regular attendance is expected.
- Transportation is not provided to child care centers (bus passes are available).
Home-Based Services: for families to use their home as the place for learning
- Families receive one 90-minute home visit per week from a Home Visitor who is trained in the research-based Parents as Teachers curriculum.
- Parents participate in learning activities designed to enhance their child’s learning and receive information and support on parenting issues, as well as resource and referral information.
- Expecting families receive home visits at least once per month from a Home Visitor who is trained in the research-based Partners for a Healthy Baby curriculum.
- Expecting families receive information and support on having a healthy pregnancy, as well as resource and referral information.
- Families and expecting families have an opportunity to attend a Play Group with other children and families twice per month.
- Home visits are available in Spanish and English.
- Regular attendance is expected.
Who is eligible?
- Families in Durham who are expecting or who have a child under the age of 3 (a child who will be 2 or younger as of August 31st).
- Foster children, homeless children, and children from families receiving public assistance (TANF, SSI, SNAP), regardless of income.
- Children with documented disabilities may be eligible regardless of income.
- Families who meet income eligibility as determined by Federal Poverty Guidelines (2023).
| Family Size
|| Family Income
| More than 8
|| Add $5,140 for each additional person
How can I apply?
Durham Early Head Start is currently accepting applications. All families who remained on the previous year’s waitlist must call (919) 403-6960 Ext. 227 to reapply.
Enrollment Applications can be downloaded here and applications may be submitted at the Durham Early Head Start Office.
Applications must include:
- Completed and signed the application
- Proof of income or school for all legal guardians in the home (Examples are: SNAP card, pay stubs for 1 month, most recent W-2 or 1040 Tax form, SSI or TANF documentation, letter from employer, letter from school, school schedule), or a notarized Statement of No Income.
- Proof of child’s age (not applicable for expecting families) – something official with your child’s birth date on it (birth certificate or Passport, Medicaid Card, etc.).
- Proof of Durham Residency – a lease or bill or ID that shows you live in Durham.
- Special Services Paperwork – if your child receives any special services, please provide documentation about that (sometimes called an IFSP).
- Family intake interview by Durham Early Head Start staff member.
Please call or visit the Durham Early Head Start Office for more information.
Si habla español por favor llame a Yadira al 919-638-0856
Durham Early Head Start
1201 S. Briggs Ave., Suite 100
Durham, NC 27703
Families with children age 3 and 4 and who reside in Durham are advised to contact Durham Head Start at (919) 688-5541.
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