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Children & Families First Celebrates Head Start Grant Award

Children & Families First (CFF), one of Delaware’s oldest and most trusted leaders in meeting the needs of children and their families proudly announces their award from The Office of Head Start (OHS) as the Permanent Five-Year Grant Manager of Head Start and Early Head Start programs in Kent and Sussex Counties.

“It has been no small feat to serve as the Interim Grant Manager of the Head Start and Early Head Start programs in Kent and Sussex for the past two years,” said Kirsten Olson, Chief Executive Officer of CFF. “Our staff have proven their dedication and resilience – launching virtual learning programs, reopening centers safely, meeting the needs of children and families both in centers and their communities, all while smiling behind their masks, and doing what we do best - making the children and families of Delaware our top priority.”


Head Start is a federally funded, high-quality early childhood education program for children birth to five, offered for free to qualifying families. CFF operates twelve centers, as well as home-based Early Head Start programming, serving more than 600 children, and employing more than 200 staff members in Kent and Sussex. Using evidence-based approaches, Head Start provides a robust curriculum that inspires a love of learning while preparing them children for success in kindergarten and beyond. Parents and caregivers are engaged in leadership roles through various advisory boards. Nutrition, medical, dental, and development services are provided through various community partnerships and Family Advocates work one on one with each family to ensure they are connected to the resources and supports they need to thrive.


“The receipt of this award provides a much-needed stability for our children, families, and staff – knowing that the supports and opportunities we have been providing will continue to be there for them,” said Clara Martinez, Chief Program Officer of CFF Head Start, “We are preparing every child we have for kindergarten, not only academically but socially and emotionally as well. We not only do our best to ensure each child and family prospers but that our employees are thriving as well.”


The announcement of the award comes at an opportune time, as school year programming recently ended for the 2021-2022 year, and recruitment begins for the 2022-2023 year. Parents and families interested in learning more about the program and enrolling their child or children for the upcoming year are encouraged to visit www.cffde.org/headstart or call 302-934-1642 for more information. Individuals interested in employment opportunities within the program are encouraged to visit www.cffde.org/jobopportunities, and apply today.

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