The Great Start Collaborative of Charlevoix, Emmet, and Northern Antrim counties is made up of community leaders and organizations from each county that have a vested interest in Early Childhood Investment. We are representatives from business, health, education, human services, higher education, non-profit, court systems, philanthropy, and parents who are implementing a plan to address the needs of young children within our Northern Michigan Communities.
G R E A T S T A R T C O L L A B O R A T I V E
Charlevoix, Emmet, & Northern Antrim Counties
The Great Start Collaborative, along with the Health Department of Northwest Michigan, are committed to ensuring that all children under the age of 5 years receive routine developmental screenings.
Because your child's first 5 years of life are so important, we want to help you provide the best start for your child. You've been invited to participate in the Ages & Stages Questionnaires, Third Edition (ASQ-3), to help you keep track of your child's development. The questionnaire may be provided every 2-, 4- or 6-month period. You will be asked to answer questions about some things your child can and cannot do. The questionnaire includes questions about your child's communication, gross motor, fine motor, problem solving, and personal social skills.
The mission of our collaborative is to engage multi-disciplinary partners and families to identify, plan and implement system change to strengthen families and improve child outcomes. Since 2012, one of our major priorities has been the implementation of the Strengthening Families Framework that promotes 5 Protective Factors to make families strong.
Every event, project, or training addresses and builds these 5 Protective Factors in families: Parental Resilience; Social Connections; Knowledge of Parenting & Child Development; Concrete Support in Times of Need; and Social and Emotional Competence of Children. A few of our successes include: a fund development committee that (through grants and individuals) provided over 100 preschool scholarships to eligible children ages 3 – 5; a FreeCycle Book Project that has distributed over 30,000 gently used books to local children; popular free events for parents such as a Halloween Costume Exchange, Early Childhood Networking Nights, Parenting Awareness Month Conference; and a nationally recognized campaign to strengthen families entitled “What Makes Your Family Strong?”