Chautauqua County Head Start faculty and staff receive family engagement training | News, Sports, Jobs

The Chautauqua County Department of Mental Hygiene (CCDMH) had the opportunity to partner with Chautauqua Opportunities, Inc. (COI), the Chautauqua County Child Care Board, for staff training and from this fall’s Head Start faculty at Park United Methodist Church in Sinclairville.

Rachel Ludwig of CCDMH and Tapestry Resilience Initiative shared family engagement strategies for faculty and staff. Ludwig’s presentation included content from ZeroToThree’s Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect, Breathe For Change Social Emotional Facilitation and the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning curriculums.

According to its website,, Head Start puts children at the heart of meaningful engagement. The education presented supported evidence-based best practices for fostering positive, goal-oriented relationships between children, families, caregivers, and program staff. Participants received references, manuals and local resources related to the topics discussed.

“Some of the resources and discussions focused on the importance of self-care,” said Ludwig. “It may seem off-track to do this as part of family engagement – ​​but really – being self-aware, creative and thoughtful is part of the common goal of supporting children and families. It all ties directly into family commitment.

Sue Marker, Beth Faulkner and Rebecca Reed of COI participated in Ludwig’s presentation. The Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) is a resource center for families, child care professionals and communities. CCR&R improves access to affordable, high-quality child care by offering many different services, from training like today to helping families find child care; providing support, education and resources to child care providers; to collect research on child care needs and trends to inform community members and decision makers.

The aim of the Tapestry Resilience Initiative is to provide safe and engaging trauma-informed services to prevent mental, emotional and behavioral disorders; identify and solve problems as early as possible; and strengthen existing collaboration among community groups and forge effective coordination to provide needed supports and services to children, youth and their families. This collaboration with COI is an excellent example of this coordination.

To learn more about the Chautauqua County Department of Mental Hygiene or the Tapestry Resilience Initiative, visit To learn more about Head Start and other local child care options, visit or call 716-366-3333.

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