What is RED Ahead?
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RED Ahead is a program currently offered at the Urban and North Towne WIC clinics (Women, Infants, and Children) and is for parents to help their young children develop the language skills they need to be ready for kindergarten.
Parents receive educational information about early literacy, books for their children, and rewards for doing certain activities that help their children develop language. Children in the program are given a screening twice a year to track their developmental milestones.
RED Ahead began in September 2011 and is currently enrolling Urban and North Towne WIC clients who have a baby under one year old and clients who are in their third trimester of pregnancy. RED Ahead is a program of Hawkeye Area Community Action Program, Inc. (HACAP) and is funded and supported by United Way of East Central Iowa.
As of Oct. 1, 2012, 641 families have been enrolled since the beginning of the program. Also, 803 children were given books from Sept 2011 to July 2012.
Parents Surveyed Results
97.7% feel more prepared to support [their] child’s language development and pre-reading skills
98.3% practiced skills learned at RED Ahead at home
96.9% practiced additional activities with children
Children receiving multiple developmental screenings
93% maintained or improved language and physical skills
98% maintained or improved cognitive skills
88% maintained or improved social-emotional skills