PEPS grant to help new families in South Snohomish County connect

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PEPS (The Program for Early Parent Support) will expand its efforts in South Snohomish County in 2013 thanks to a grant from the Verdant Health Commission. The grant will fund enhanced outreach and education efforts in South Snohomish County as well as reduce program fees by 35 percent for families living within the Verdant Health Commission boundaries.

“PEPS educates and supports parents and children with the goal of building healthy families, much like our goal of improving the well-being of our residents” said Verdant Health Commission Superintendent Carl Zapora. “The value provided by PEPS in other areas of Puget Sound is evident, and we are pleased that this partnership will bring those established services to more South Snohomish County families.”

PEPS offers neighborhood-based Newborn Groups which typically start when babies are between 0-4 months old. In a PEPS Group, moms and dads meet (with their babies), share, learn and build confidence in their parenting abilities. Each meeting includes time for sharing parenting highs and lows followed by a discussion of a parenting topic. Participants can choose a daytime group (typically for moms), evening group (for couples or one parent) or do both. Meetings are facilitated by Volunteer PEPS Group Leaders for 12 weeks and rotate between group members homes.

In addition to neighborhood-based Newborn Groups, PEPS offers Baby Peppers, a program for families with babies 5-12 month olds, which kicks off Jan. 14 in Mountlake Terrace. The group will meet every Monday from 12 to 1:30 p.m. at the Parent Trust Office located at 6912 220th St. S.W. in Mountlake Terrace. PEPS will add a second Baby Peppers location in South Snohomish County in 2013. You can find more information about Baby Peppers here.

New and expectant parents who are interested in learning more can attend a PEPS orientation, offered monthly on the third Monday of the month from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Bothell Bright Horizons – 19801 North Creek Parkway. Upcoming orientation dates are Jan. 21 and Feb. 18. A complete list of orientation dates and locations is available here.

For more information about PEPS programs and to register for a group, visit www.peps.org. Families are strongly encouraged to register while they are pregnant but can also register after their baby is born. You can check here to see if you live in the Verdant Health Commission service area and therefore qualify for a reduced program fee.

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