I have gone through the Head Start program since my oldest Adam was enrolled. He completed 2 years with the program and continued to kindergarten. I now have Colt going through the program as well as Emma who has been enrolled through birth. Adam is 5, Colt is 3 and Emma will be 8 months at the end of November. All the kids have started at different points in the Head start program so we have been able to see the different sides to the program. We are always happy with what we are getting out of it. Head start has made a huge positive change and is now making huge leaps with everything he does. Colt was helped with managing his aggression and now has normal toddler tantrums. Just this year the boys have had a lot of changes happening in their lives and with the help of Head start I was able to keep them succeeding and it didn’t impact them negatively. We absolutely love all the staff and feel like we are apart of their little family. I also been on the policy council now for a couple of years and it is a great way to become even more involved with the school. Thank you Head start family for helping my family and giving us so many positive resources.
Our family entered the Head Start program last year when out daughter Fatima started the center base class in Maricopa, Arizona. Our daughter was not used to being in a class with other children and it took some time for her to learn the routine. The staff was very patient with her. We feel that because the staff being so loving and supportive our daughter has learned a lot. Fatima has come a long way in her social development.
It was hard at first to communicate with the staff because I was just learning English. While engaging with the program, and through my daughter, I have picked up on a lot of new English skills. I have now become more familiar with English, and this has help me to become more confident in communicating with others in the community.
The program has really been a great support to our family in many ways, and we are very thankful.
When COVID-19 entered our lives, I didn’t know how it would affect us. I didn’t know if we would face many hardships, how we would overcome them if we did, if it would affect my job, or my child’s development; my child came into this world early and has experienced some delays due to it. Carina’s current obstacle to overcome is a speech delay. With the help of Carina’s speech therapist, technology and working at PGCCS, I found confidence, reassurance and hope. PGCCS has given me the tools through its teachers, staff and sense of community to know that my daughter’s delay will not progress—that my job is safe and technology can work in my advantage. Through ClassDojo postings and the home visits I have found meaningful and knowledgeable activities to improve Carina’s speech delay. This is so exciting to see and hear, because when walking through a delay, it can seem long and impossible. With the help of staff and the sense of community it provides, I found that I am not alone through my walk. They have provided a shoulder to lean on and so many wonderful strategies to implement at home!
Through technology I have been able to remain in touch with her therapist and teachers. Without the aide of technology, I am not sure Carina and I would have been able to make as much progress as we have made so far. Being able to send a picture or a recorded video has allowed her teachers and I to become a team for Carina. I’m sure they can tell anyone that I send a lot too! This team has created a strong support system for her. I feel as if our team and the connection I share with PGGCS staff is as strong as it is, because of technology and the time we’ve been able to spend together—something that would have been harder to accomplish before COVID-19. I am so grateful for this connection and time!
Having the reassurance that my daughter’s needs are being met and all of the uncertainties I faced before will be squashed (due to the support of my work family) has encouraged me to reapply to the University of Arizona and finish my schooling. I am proud to say that I have been admitted to the UofA and into the Early Childhood Education program! Having the opportunity to work at PGCCS has shown me that I truly love what I do and cannot wait to share this same enthusiasm with the many families we work with. I cannot wait to share with them the same gifts PGCCS has given me: a sense of family, support and hope.