"LAUNCH has provided an opportunity for our state early childhood agencies to intentionally work together to strengthen coordination and support emerging initiatives such as Help Me Grow, MIECHV and Race-to-the-Top Early Learning Challenge."
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The purpose of Project LAUNCH (Linking Actions for Unmet Needs in Children’s Health) is to promote the wellness of young children ages birth to 8 by addressing the physical, social, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral aspects of their development. The long-term goal of Project LAUNCH is to ensure that all children enter school ready to learn and able to succeed. Project LAUNCH seeks to improve coordination across child-serving systems, build infrastructure, and increase access to high-quality prevention and wellness promotion services for children and their families. Project LAUNCH is guided by a unique, federal-level partnership among the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Administration for Children and Families, the Health Resources and Services Administration, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Project LAUNCH is grounded in the public health approach, working toward coordinated programs that take a comprehensive view of health and promote the well-being of all young children. Project LAUNCH seeks to improve outcomes at the individual, family, and community levels by addressing risk factors that can lead to negative outcomes. Project LAUNCH promotes protective factors that support resilience and healthy development, which can protect individuals from later problems.
States, territories, and tribes select a local pilot community within the larger jurisdiction to be a partner in Project LAUNCH. They bring together child-serving organizations to develop policies, financial mechanisms, and other reforms to improve the integration and efficiency of the child-serving system. Local communities have a dual focus on improving collaboration across the child-serving system and improving access to and availability of evidence-based prevention and wellness promotion practices (including traditional tribal practices that promote wellness). Grantees infuse mental health‒informed practices into primary care, early care and education, home visiting, and family settings.
Grantees implement five core prevention and promotion strategies: (1) screening and assessment in a variety of child-serving settings, (2) enhanced home visiting through increased focus on social and emotional well-being, (3) mental health consultation in early care and education programs, (4) family strengthening and parent skills training, and (5) integration of behavioral health into primary care settings. Innovative and effective prevention/promotion practices at the local level serve as models to be sustained and replicated throughout the state, territory, and tribe.
Please click here to view Project LAUNCH grantees.