Celebrate Strengthening Families Month in April with DEAP:
When families are strong, communities are strong!
Week One starting March 31st: Autism Awareness
One in 68 children are born with Autism. Our communities are stronger when we try to understand and include people who are different from us. This week’s challenge: learn more about people with Autism:
Young Children and Families: Sesame Street: Watch On YouTube
Older Children and Families: Sesame Street: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKCdV20zLMs
Businesses: Is your business Autism friendly? https://www.autism-society.org/living-with-autism/community-inclusion/autismfriendly/businessprogram/#mean
More on DEAP’s Autism Services: https://deapmontana.org/autism-insurance-services/
Week Two starting April 7th: Human Development Awareness
When delays are caught in the first three years of a life, they most likely won’t be noticeable as the child ages because of the amazing growth of the human brain during early years. Our communities are stronger when we actively participate in our children’s growth and development. This week’s challenge: check out these great resources to track a child’s development at any early age. If you have concerns, contact Sandy at 234-6034.
Phone app: CDC’s Milestone Tracker: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones-app.html
Booklet: Milestones and age appropriate activities:
More on DEAP’s Early Intervention Services: https://deapmontana.org/montana-milestones/
Some delays will be a lifelong challenge and we support living independently for people with disabilities in our communities as well. Our communities are stronger when we empower independence and success!
More on DEAP’s services for Adults and Youth with Disabilities: https://deapmontana.org/adult-supported-living/
Week Three starting April 14th: Family Nutrition Awareness
Eating healthy while pregnant and providing healthy foods during childhood is important for proper growth and development. Healthy eating patterns include fruits and vegetables, whole grains, a variety of protein, fat-free/low-fat dairy products and healthy oils. Our communities are stronger when our mothers and children are well fed. This week’s challenge: make as many meals as possible following the Choose My Plate guidelines found here: https://www.choosemyplate.gov/. Post your plates on DEAP’s Facebook page for a chance to win a $50 gift card! https://www.facebook.com/deapmt
For more information about nutrition and brain development: http://www.urbanchildinstitute.org/articles/updates/nutrition-and-early-brain-development
DEAP provides the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program giving education on nutrition, breast feeding and to supplement a family’s grocery budget with items essential for healthy growth. For more information on these services, please visit: https://deapmontana.org/women-infants-children/
Week Four starting April 21st: Caregiver Awareness
The state estimates more than 118,000 residents provide $1.43 billion per year of unpaid care to help their loved ones- elderly parents, spouses, children with disabilities- live in their own homes or with relatives verses more expensive care such as nursing homes. This care includes helping with bathing and dressing, preparing meals, driving to appointments and meeting some medical needs. Our communities are stronger when those who care for others receive care themselves! This week’s challenge: Do something nice for yourself or someone you know who gives selflessly to others.
1. Take care of your own health so that you can be strong enough to take care of your loved one.
2. Accept offers of help and suggest specific things people can do to help you.
3. Watch out for signs of depression and don’t delay getting professional help when you need it.
4. Give yourself credit for doing the best you can in one of the toughest jobs there is!
5. Caregiving is hard work. Take respite breaks when you need it! DEAP has a program to help caregivers get a break: https://deapmontana.org/lifespan-respite/
Week Five starting April 28th: Child Abuse and Neglect Awareness
245 children were removed from the care of their biological parent(s) because of abuse or neglect in DEAP’s region. Our communities are stronger when we give parents the tools needed to be successful in raising children and when we can offer help to children not being cared for. This week’s challenge: Learn the signs of abuse and neglect: https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/whatiscan.pdf#page=5&view=Recognizing Signs of Abuse and Neglect and how to report if you are concerned: 1-866-820-5437.
DEAP serves children and young adults in the foster care system. To learn more: https://deapmontana.org/family-preservation-supervised-visitation/
Yellowstone Valley Gives: May 2nd through May 3rd
Please consider donating to DEAP to be a partner in strengthening Eastern Montana communities by visiting