HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) Infant University begins next month in Huntsville but don't let the name fool you. At this school, it's the parents who will be doing the learning.
Infant University is the latest outreach from Village of Promise. The non-profit provides a number of services to neighborhoods in the area of Northwest Huntsville, with the ultimate goal of breaking the cycle of generational poverty. The free nine-week program will give new and expectant parents some of the tools they need to raise happy, healthy children.
It's modeled on a program that began in Harlem's Children Zone in 2000 and is based on the curriculum of noted pediatrician Dr. T. Berry Brazelton. In March, Village of Promise staff members received training in teaching the curriculum, which focuses on meeting the needs of children from birth to age three.
Numerous studies have shown this is a critical time in childhood development; children's brains grow more in this period than at any other time in life, trust is formed with caregivers and a basis of learning is established.
The first course begins September 27th. Classes will be held Saturdays from 8:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. at AAA school on Poplar Avenue. Village of Promise will provide breakfast, lunch and childcare. Enrollment will be limited to 25 families.
Village of Promise CEO Bobby Bradley says she knows it's impossible to relay all the information needed over the course of nine weeks but adds, "the most important thing we will be doing is establishing the relationships with the parents that we can continue throughout the life of the child until they graduate college and enter a career which is the whole mission of village of Promise in general."
Three more Infant University Courses are planned. Anyone interested in enrolling is asked to contact Bobby Bradley at firstname.lastname@example.org or Gloria Batts at email@example.com. Volunteer opportunities are also always available. The number to call is 256-536-8052.