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United for Brownsville Presents at Zero to Three Conference

October 27, 2020 / SCO News

United for Brownsville (UB) Co-Directors Kassa Belay and David Harrington presented at the Zero to Three Virtual Conference October 5th, the largest and one of the most prestigious early childhood conferences in the country. United for Brownsville is a collaborative of families and professionals who are improving the early childhood system in Brownsville, Brooklyn. UB work is co-led by UB staff, residents of Brownsville, and local service providers. These stakeholders plan and incubate innovative solutions to problems around essential health, educational, and social services for young children.

United for Brownville teamed up with community partners from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Bureau of Early Intervention, Brooklyn College, and the HealthySteps program at Brookdale Hospital as part of a presentation called Collaborating for Systems Change: Early Intervention in Brownsville, Brooklyn that focused on how UB brought together different stakeholders to collaboratively work towards equity in access to and outcomes from Early Intervention (EI) services for children in Central Brooklyn. Equitable access to Early Intervention is key to ensuring children with developmental delays receive necessary supports.

Over 200 early childhood professionals from across the country came together in the conference to learn about the drivers of disparities in referral and service delivery at both the systems and individual level and hear how challenges in referring children to Early Intervention were addressed in Brownsville. The group also discussed the role of cross-sector collaboration, with a premium placed on local resident involvement, aimed at improving access to and outcomes from EI services.

The United for Brownsville early intervention collaboration began its effort by focusing on the insights shared by local residents about problems with access to and usage of the Early Intervention system in Brownsville. Upon confirmation of these issues, the group researched the causes and created a roadmap for how to address them.

By sharing their insights, United for Brownsville and their partners hope that other communities will be able to incorporate the same type of community collaboration to achieve equitable access to Early Intervention.

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