Pregnant or Parenting Families


What are family support programs?

As parents, we all need a little support. Babies don't come with an instruction manual. Family support programs are voluntary programs provided at no cost to your family that will give you family support through visits in your home by a family support provider. Your family support provider will provide information and support about parenting, your child's health and development, walk you through healthy coping strategies for stressful parenting situations, and connect you with any needed services in the community (such as health care, job training).

There are eight family support programs that studies show help families from pregnancy until the time the child enters kindergarten in New York State: Early Head Start, Healthy Families New York; Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters; Nurse-Family Partnership; Parents as Teachers; SafeCare; Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up program (ABC). Find a program near you.

What can I expect during a visit from my family support provider?

Your family support provider will work with you to set up a schedule to provide family support in your home.

Through family support and coaching, your family support provider will help improve your family's well-being and provide the best opportunities for your child(ren) through:

  • Connecting to resources and services in your community to help with housing, healthcare, education, employment, and childcare
  • Connecting to other parents in your community
  • Help to track your baby's development month by month during pregnancy and after birth
  • Support with breastfeeding and caring for your baby
  • Working with you to make caring for your baby a joyful experience
  • Healthy coping strategies for when you don't know why your baby is crying
  • Help to understand child developmental milestones and behaviors
  • Encouragement with positive parenting techniques
  • Goal-setting for yourself and your family
  • Assistance with confusing forms and processes and managing needs and demands that may seem overwhelming

Is a family support program for me?

Anyone who is pregnant or parenting a young child would benefit from family support. It is a great resource for families who are:

  • Pregnant
  • Parents or caregivers of children who have not yet started kindergarten
  • In need of support with being a parent of multiple children
  • In need of support to help make sure their child is ready to start school
  • In the military and far from family and friends
  • In need of help with getting back together after being apart

Find a Family Support Provider near you

Parenting resources

Growing Up Healthy Hotline: Find Services for Parents and Parents-to-Be Throughout New York State

Contact the Growing Up Healthy Hotline at 1-800-522-5006 or through TTY access at 1-800-655-1789. All calls are confidential. An operator will help identify the services needed and provide information on how to locate a provider in your area.

NYS Parent Guide website: The Parent Guide for children and their caregivers: Starting life together

This is your guide for parenting. It is the story of the first five years of your parenting journey. Whether you are the mother or father (through birth, adoption, or foster care), a grandparent, partner, family friend, aunt or uncle with parenting responsibilities, what you say and do in your role as a parent matters.