How Nurse-Family Partnership Helps Young Families Give Children a Healthy Start

I married a world-class father. In fact, Nick Noyes’ children from his first marriage — Henry, then 14, and Elizabeth, then 12 — played a huge role in our courtship. We laughed more and loved harder when Henry and/or Elizabeth were with us. So I knew he would be a good dad to our kids too.

Our eight kids and their progeny are our greatest blessing. To pay this forward, Nick prioritizes giving kids a healthy start in life and a strong foundation with early childhood development by supporting the Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP).

Nurse-Family Partnership: Research-Driven Results For Healthy Families

This program provides home health care nurse visits to young families experiencing poverty, homelessness or violence. These partnerships begin in early pregnancy until the child reaches the age of 2.

Nurse-Family Partnership has teamed up first-time moms with registered nurses for over 45 years. Since replication began in 1996, NFP has served 385,376 families nationally. The program involves more than 2,000 nurse home visitors and supervisors who operate in 732 counties across more than 40 states, including Washington D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands, and some Tribal Communities.

The results of this teamwork have been nothing less than extraordinary.

A wide range of scientific studies prove that these essential partnerships support and improve prenatal health for both mother and child, reduce abuse and violence in the home, and has positive long-term effects on a child’s behavior.

You can learn more about more about NPF’s research outcomes here. And, this video podcast from Conversations on Health Care shows how Nurse-Family Partnership works.

How Nurse-Family Partnership Works Video Podcast | Courtesy of NFP | YouTube

NFP Offers Parents Essential Health and Emotional Support

First-time mom Chelbey Gartner, who lives in Colorado with her baby son Declan, credits her Nurse-Family Partnership for helping her with the uncertain times of pregnancy through the challenges of raising a newborn.

“She [the nurse partner] doesn’t just want to know about Declan, she asks about what’s going on with me, too, which is really nice,” Gartner said in her county’s newsletter. “I have someone to talk about all the stuff I’m going through, too.”

Another new mom, Fernanda, was only 20 years old when she learned about her pregnancy. A school counselor recommended Nurse-Family Partnership directly through the district, where Fernanda re-enrolled to get her high school diploma.

Fernanda and her partner Christopher relied on their nurse Christina during pregnancy health complications, Fernanda’s high school graduation, and even postpartum depression.

“Christina helped me become the mom I never knew I could be,” she explained to the Nurse-Family Partnership Blog. “When we reach new milestones, she is the first person we call.”

NFP nurse Christina, Valeria, mom Fernanda and dad Christopher
(left to right) NFP nurse Christina, Valeria, mom Fernanda, and dad Christopher | Photo courtesy of NFP

New moms are not the only people NFP supports in their partnerships.

When Jacob and his girlfriend Megan discovered they were expecting their first baby in 2020, they felt nervous about their preparedness for the new arrival.

“When Megan first told me she was pregnant, I was unsure of what to do next,” Jacob told the NFP blog. “I felt relieved when we decided to reach out to Nurse-Family Partnership to get some help. I was even more reassured when we learned NFP is a free program.”

Megan knew about NFP because her twin sister went through the program two years earlier during her pregnancy.

Nurse Paula became an integral part of Jacob and Megan’s parenting experience, from pregnancy and childbirth through the first months of parenting during the COVID-19 pandemic. At first, the visits were virtual. Eventually, when their baby Benjamin was three months old, Paula got clearance to make her first in-person visit.

(left to right) Megan, Jacob and Benjamin B.
Megan, Jacob and Benjamin | Photo courtesy of NFP

“I got really excited when nurse Paula would come visit,” Jacob shared. “I Liked seeing how Benjamin was growing when she weighed him, and the reassurance from a nurse telling us he was meeting his milestones.”

A Single, Thoughtful Gift Makes A Major Difference

Nick’s best present to me in 2023 was his request that the Make It Better Foundation amplify a $100,000 Matching Gift. Fortuitously, this was a big win for the organization too, as the Nurse-Family Partnership’s Impact Report affirmed:

“We raised $404,992 from 368 donors, including a $100,000 anonymous gift from a generous supporter.

“The announcement of the match undoubtedly made a huge difference, inspiring new donors. New donors comprised 21% of our donors, 4% more than last year. In addition, our lapsed donors (meaning donors who have not given for more than 18 months) grew by 5% over last year, with many doubling the amount of their support.

“Thanks to the match, we are also one of the few nonprofits that can report improved Giving Tuesday (11/28/23). Our Giving Tuesday gifts went up by 60% over last year and the total amount raised more than tripled. A donor who gave $775 online commented that they have been donating annually and gave because of the match. The match also inspired a couple to make NFP the beneficiary of their baby shower, in lieu of presents, which brought in $1,100 from 16 new donors.

“We are deeply grateful for all of the ways the year-end match helped Nurse-Family Partnership attract new supporters, regain the support of former ones, and inspire generosity in others.”

Nurse-Family Partnershp Impact Report

We’re delighted that we could support and elevate this important initiative and hope to do this again and again- for not only the Nurse-Family Partnership but for other outstanding nonprofits that are supported by great fathers. Our Matching Grant Campaigns and other strategies will help them enjoy greater impact, and exceed expectations too.

Please share your love and submit your story about outstanding fathers and the nonprofits they support as a You Said It article.

How To Help

If you want to learn more about Nurse-Family Partnership or help support the organization’s mission to connect nurses with new families, visit the NFP gift page or click the Donate Now button below.

This post was submitted as part of our “You Said It” program.” Your voice, ideas, and engagement are important to help us accomplish our mission. We encourage you to share your ideas and efforts to make the world a better place by submitting a “You Said It.”

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Susan Noyes

Susan B. Noyes is the Founder & Chief Visionary Officer of the Make It Better Foundation, known for its vibrant lifestyle publishing platform and annual Philanthropy Awards.

A mother of eight, grandmother of nine (and hopeful of more), passionate storyteller, teacher, philanthropist, and Sidley Austin attorney, Susan is a common sense problem solver and intuitive community builder.

She proudly helps outstanding organizations own their expertise online in order and amplify their social impact.

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