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Early Head Start Coming To Bozeman, Helena

Early Head Start programs are coming to Bozeman and Helena for the first time.

The non-profit, AWARE Incorporated will use a $1.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to partner with local child-care agencies to make Early Head Start cheaper for low-income families.

Melinda Wade Corso, Early Childhood Services Director, says infants and toddlers might be too young to read and write, but not to learn to sit quietly in class.

“It’s huge. And, you know, in order to make friends, children have to value and understand what healthy relationships are like. At the infant and toddler stage we’re focusing on the attachment with the child and the interactions that child has with the caregiver."

Wade Corso says Aware will train and consult with existing child-care agencies to offer Early Head Start programs in exchange for financing and expertise.

She says the grant will cover program costs for some families but not all. Aware will provide subsidies for at least 50 percent of eligible families.

The 5-year grant will fund at least 11 news positions beginning in early March.

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