The field of Early Childhood Mental Health is blossoming and bringing increased awareness to the vulnerabilities and opportunities of the first 5 years of life. In this session we will explore the evidence of the need to concentrate more resources and expand our expertise around engaging and strengthening all of the adults who young children depend on – especially parents and child care providers of children under 3. One of the best indicators of the health of a community is how well it protects and invests in the youngest children and young children’s wellbeing depends on the wellbeing of their caregivers.
Ennis Baker is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in early childhood mental health and has served in a variety of roles serving at-risk children ages birth to 5 and their families. She began her career as a toddler teacher in 1988 and has worked in various counties in North Carolina serving as a home visitor, program director and as a social worker on a multidisciplinary team responsible for determining eligibility for early intervention services for children under 5. In 1999, she began working as an administrator and mental health specialist for Orange County Early Head Start in Chapel Hill, NC and 17 years later, she serves as the Family Partnership Manager/Mental Health Specialist for the same program that now serves 244 Head Start and Early Head Start children. In this role, she consults with program staff and families around issues of toxic stress, child abuse & neglect, parenting, preventing and managing children’s challenging behavior, adult & child mental health and strengthening families by strengthening protective factors.
- Center for Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation-http://www.ecmhc.org/
- Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health-https://www.zerotothree.org/early-learning/infant-and-early-childhood-mental-health
- InBrief: Early Childhood Mental Health-http://developingchild.harvard.edu/resources/inbrief-early-childhood-mental-health/
- NC Infant/Early Childhood Mental Health Association-http://www.ncimha.org/
- Strengthening Families –http://www.cssp.org/reform/strengtheningfamilies
- Handouts: All handouts for the event are posted please click links- acestoohigh-aces-and-resilience-questionslinks-to-learn-more-about-early-childhood-mental-health-100316the-soc-emot-and-mental-health-of-infants-toddlers-oct-11-2016