The Power of Families Project

Increasing equitable opportunities & removing barriers

The goal of The Power of Families Project (POF), is to remove the unique barriers that impede school readiness and community engagement access to health care among Tulsa’s Hispanic/Latinx families, with a focus on Spanish-speaking, vulnerable and isolated families. POF uses bilingual and bicultural Promotoras, to engage with families to better understand their social, economic, health, behavioral health and inclusion needs. Spanish-speaking families are often systemically discouraged from engaging in accessing social services, community activities and are normally not represented in local policy making. Through engagement with these families, the program provides community partners and leaders with culturally-competent local strategies to remove barriers and provide equitable opportunities.

Core Values >

  • We believe in the power of family and acknowledge and respect them as their children’s first teacher.

  • We believe that families are our partners and use their strengths and capacities to promote, monitor, and advocate for their children and family members’ success(es).

Objectives >

  • Provide a support system for immigrant and natural-born Hispanic/Latinx residents of Tulsa County;
  • Assist Hispanic/Latinx families so that their children will experience educational equity;
  • Decrease rate of developmental delays of Hispanic/Latinx children (Birth-5 years) through assessment and referral;
  • Provide health promotion education to Latino childrearing women and families;
  • Provide connection to the community for Hispanic/Latinx families.

The Promotora Model >

Promotoras are peer leaders and educators who are members of the community with lived experience in the Hispanic/Latinx culture who receive specialized training to serve as Hispanic/Latinx community liaisons, advocates and educators. Their role is to build trust with Hispanic/Latinx families enrolled in The Power of Families Project and increase families’ knowledge of community resources, assist them in developing a dense social network within their school and community, and support them in caring and advocating for their children and family members.

Program History >

  • The Power of Families began in 2014 with a three-year grant awarded by W.K. Kellogg Foundation to the Community Service Council to expand the capacity of Tulsa area Hispanic/Latinx families, friends and neighborhood care environments to provide successful equitable early childhood experiences for children who were not able to access formal early childhood programs and/or whose first language was not English. 

  • Program Effectiveness: In May 2016, 62% of ASQ scores were in the Below Average Range. A reassessment of the children tested was conducted in January 2017 to determine promotora and parent effectiveness in assisting their children developmentally. The reassessment showed that the percentage of Below Average Range scores (62%) had decreased to 36%. In other words, 42% of children screened who fell in the Below Average Range improved their scores during PFP enrollment.

For More Information

Maria Elena Kuykendall
Community Advisor, Power of Families Project
Community Service Council
918-699-4253 | mkuykendall@csctulsa.org

Su An Phipps, Ph.D., RN
Program Manager, Power of Families Project
Community Service Council
918-295-1222  | sphipps@csctulsa.org

Our Work

  • Facilitate Baby Book Clubs at several partner locations (i.e. Union Public Schools) to enhance early literacy among families with infants
  • Promote a cultural bridge between families and schools and create a space to connect, socialize and provide early literacy for children ages 0-5.
  • Assist mothers as they build skills and develop knowledge about child development so that early intervention can occur
  • Build community capacity activities, such as the Community Promotora Certification Program developed in partnership with Tulsa Community College (TCC) and Comunidad Esperanza
  • 75 total promotoras have been certified through this course as of Spring 2019

“Power of Families is an exceptional program to help families who are learning to navigate the American education system as well as the government. All too often I see young parents who are afraid to engage in programs because of lack of information. Power of families helps those families understand the benefits and engaging in our city, state and federal government processes. They are an exceptional team in helping calm the fears with the unknown in our immigrant and first-generation Hispanic American communities.”

– Officer Jesse Guardiola, Tulsa Police Hispanic Outreach Program

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