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.
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.
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.