About Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub, Inc.
The Hub Region includes Marion and Polk County geographic areas. Within the hub region, Salem-Keizer is the largest, most densely populated area, however, the region includes many rural and remote areas. The hub region is served by multiple community partner organizations committed to meeting the needs of children and their families. Community partners include early childhood, education, health, social services, culturally specific organizations, and business all with the common goal of ensuring that children are more ready for kindergarten, services are coordinated and aligned, and families are stable and attached.
How does your organization promote/use brain science with children birth through 5 years of age?
MPELH supports the community through training and the provision of materials. We have co-branded and included Vroom as a part of all that we do. Vroom is integrated in our website as well as part of our strategic plan.
Can you discuss a specific program/event you do that promotes brain science?
The implementation of Vroom has brought together community partners in a very tangible way. Here are some of the ways we have utilized existing and created new partnerships:
- Worked with over 30 Community-Based Organizations (from education, social services, and health care organizations) to deliver Vroom in a way that fits with their program such as waiting rooms, home visits, parent education events, program registration.
- Salem Public Library included Vroom early literacy tip cards part of their Early Literacy Totes that check out to families throughout the year. During the Week of the Young Child, they also featured Vroom fliers on their Display shelf along with decorated, wrapped picture books “Play date with a Book” that flew off their shelves! Youth Services staff has also featured the Vroom app for families during story time. All other libraries in our cooperative have taken Vroom materials to share with their community.
- Parent Advisory Committee members are Vroom Ambassadors distributing Vroom materials with friends, families and other community connections.
- Kindergarten Partnership and Innovation – Vroom is utilized in programs and events involving early learning providers, families and school staff at 16 KPI sites. We are expanding KPI into additional school sites and they will be utilizing Vroom as a part of their work.
- Child Care Networks and child care providers share Vroom materials with their families as children are in their care.
- DHS self-sufficiency and child welfare programs –case workers utilize Vroom brain building activities with their clients as well as distributes materials to families.
- WIC – home visiting nurses continue sharing Vroom materials with clients.
- Community events – Vroom has been a part of all of our community events, either by us or by community partners. Here families are shared information on Vroom and engaged in an activity that demonstrates Vroom and its power.
- Special training – MPELH staff attend various group meetings or educational opportunities to share Vroom. These include groups like teen parent programs, treatment groups, or other parent support groups.
Vroom Impact Stories from Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub, Inc.
Marion County Behavioral Health parents learn they have what it takes…
Vroom was presented during a parenting class at Recovery/Treatment program (Woodmansee). Parents were presented with a mirror that said “you already have what it takes,” the Vroom materials, and watched the Vroom video. Parents said “we wish we were told this a long time ago,” “I never thought I had what it takes… I have so much guilt /shame about my use.” Parents were excited to learn ways to enhance brain development and encouraged to know “they have what it takes.” All the parents downloaded the Vroom app.
Special bonding for a single parent…
“My nephew, who is in his late 20’s, is going through a divorce and has his 4 year old son with him part-time. They love doing the activities when they are together and keep track of the stars they get. My nephew is so excited that he has something special to do with his son and keeps thanking me.”