Early Head Start

What is Early Head Start?

Durham Early Head Start (DEHS) is a collaboration between Durham’s Partnership for Children, Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project and Center for Child & Family Health. Early Head Start is a no cost, comprehensive child development and family support program for low-income families with children aged birth to three years old and to expectant families. 

DEHS serves 172 children and their families in two program options: center-based and home-based. Expecting families are enrolled in the home-based option. 
Home-Based Services:
• Families receive one home visit per week from a Home Visitor who is trained in the research-based Parents as Teachers curriculum. 
• Parents participate in learning activities designed to enhance their child’s learning and receive information and support on parenting issues, as well as resource and referral information. 
• Expecting families receive home visits at least once per month from a Home Visitor who is trained in the research-based Partners for a Healthy Baby curriculum. 
• Expecting families receive information and support on having a healthy pregnancy, as well as resource and referral information. 
• Families and expecting families have an opportunity to attend a Play Group with other children and families twice per month.
• Home visits are available in Spanish and English.
• Parents are encouraged to play an active role in the management of DEHS by joining parent committees and policy groups.
Center-Based Services:
• Children receive 6- or 10-hour, full-year child care in one of our partnering centers.
• Early Head Start teachers and staff provide a nurturing and stimulating learning environment for children.
• Families commit to participate in home visits and parent-teacher conferences.
• Family Service Coordinators and Bilingual Family Service Coordinators meet individually with parents to provide information, support, and resource and referral information.
• Families have an opportunity to attend parent meetings and to become active in the management of DEHS.

Who is eligible?
• Pregnant women and children who will be 2 or younger as of August 31, whose address is in Durham County.
• Foster children, children from families receiving public assistance (TANF or SSI), and homeless families, regardless of income.
• Children with documented disabilities may be eligible regardless of income.
• Families who meet income eligibility as determined by Federal Poverty Guidelines.

 Family Size Family Income
 2 $ 20,709
 3 $ 26,117
 4 $ 31,525
 5 $ 36,933
 $ 42,341
 $ 47,749
 $ 53,157
 More than 8
 Add $4,160 for each
 additional person

How can I apply?

Durham Early Head Start accepts applications for the upcoming program year from February 1 - May 15. Families not selected will be placed on the waiting list for that program year. Families must reapply yearly.

Enrollment Applications can be downloaded here and applications may be submitted at the Durham Early Head Start Office.
Durham EHS Prenatal Application [English] [Spanish]
Durham EHS Application [English] [Spanish]

Applications must include:
1. Completed and signed application
2. Proof of income or school for all legal guardians in the home (Examples are: pay stubs for 1 month, most recent W-2 or 1040 Tax form, SSI or TANF documentation, letter from employer, letter from school, school schedule), or a notarized Statement of No Income.
3. Proof of child’s age (not applicable for expecting families) - something official with your child's birth date on it (Birth Certificate or Passport, Medicaid Card, etc.).
4. Proof of Durham Residency - a lease or bill or ID that shows you live in Durham.
5. Special Services Paperwork - if your child receives any special services, please provide documentation about that (sometimes called an IFSP).
6. Family intake interview by Durham Early Head Start staff member.
Please call or visit the Durham Early Head Start Office for more information.

Durham Early Head Start
1201 S. Briggs Ave., Suite 110
Durham, NC 27707
Phone: (919) 439-7107
Fax: (866) 839-1642
Email: info@durhamehs.org

Families with children age 3 and 4 and who reside in Durham are advised to contact Durham Head Start at (919) 688-5541.

Resources and Links

North Carolina Head Start Association

Early Head Start National Resource Center

Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center

Zero to Three

Head Start Performance Standards

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