Smart Start Develops Online Catalog of Effective Solutions to Support North Carolina’s Children 
Posted on 03.23.2024, Saturday

Durham’s Partnership for Children Uses Smart Solutions to Support Children and Families in Durham County 

Durham, North Carolina – March 23, 2024 – The North Carolina Partnership for Children (NCPC) and the Smart Start Network developed Smart Solutions: Effective Prenatal-to-Five Investments, a virtual catalog of over 70 evidence-based and evidence-informed programs, interventions, and strategies that can support children and families statewide. Smart Start is a network of 75 Local Partnerships that supports children and families in every county in North Carolina. Each Local Partnership uses state funds allocated to the Network, as well as private funds to support children and families. 

Durham’s Partnership for Children utilizes the strategies within Smart Solutions to support a significant number of children in Durham County.  

Smart Solutions includes a comprehensive array of support for children, families, and teachers that focus on early care and education, family support, literacy, child and family health, and system building. Over 100 solutions were reviewed by our evaluation staff to ensure that evidence-based or evidence-informed programs, strategies, and solutions are shared with Partnerships, stated Casey Strange, Learning & Evaluation Director at NCPC. Selected solutions either have research and evidence showing their effectiveness in supporting children and families or are trusted solutions that have been endorsed by North Carolina state agencies. 

Local Partnerships use Smart Solutions to select the best options for children and families to meet their community’s specific needs. These needs are determined through local needs assessments, strategic planning, and collaboration with cross-sector partners around early childhood issues unique to their region. 

“As an executive director, overseeing Durham’s Partnership for Children, I am proud to witness the impactful implementation of a comprehensive suite of early childhood programs across Durham. Serving as the contract administrator of NC PreK and a collaborating partner of DPK.  Both serve as a testament to our commitment to providing high-quality early education opportunities for all children , setting the foundation for their future success. Through Durham Early Head Start, we extend our reach to support pregnant women, infants, toddlers, and their families, ensuring holistic development from the earliest stages of life. Transition to Kindergarten initiatives smooth the journey into formal schooling, fostering continuity and readiness. Additionally, our innovative Farm to Early Childhood Education program not only promotes healthy habits but also connects children with the local agricultural community, enriching their learning experiences. Complementing these efforts, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library ignites a love for reading from an early age, fostering a lifelong passion for learning. Together, these programs exemplify our dedication to nurturing every child’s potential, laying the groundwork for a thriving community in Durham.” As said by Dr. Danielle Johnson-Offei, Executive Director of DPfC 

Partnerships fund and coordinate county solutions based off this information to ensure effective early childhood system-building work, advance child health, support families, expand literacy, and establish high-quality early learning opportunities and support the early childhood workforce. 

The catalog will continue to grow to include more solutions for North Carolina as well as evidence-based and evidence-informed solutions for other states. Additional solutions can be suggested for further review by e-mailing or using this form. 

“By expanding the catalog to include a greater breadth of support for children and families, we can better meet the needs within each community, offering a comprehensive system of services, funding, and programs to cover the full ecosystem of early childhood,” stated Amy Cubbage, president of NCPC. 

To find out more about Smart Solutions, visit To learn more about Durham’s Partnership for Children and solutions provided to children and families in Durham County, visit 

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