In recognition of the significant positive impact that Square One is having on families throughout the greater Springfield region, the Children's Trust recently honored the agency at its annual award ceremony.

Square One's Healthy Families program received an Award of Excellence for its group programs, recognizing the agency's creativity, community collaborations, and overall success from the point of view of participants, summary reports, participant responses, site visit observations, and other communication.

Healthy Families is a home-based family support and coaching program that supports young, first-time parents and helps them create stable, nurturing environments for their children. The program matches parents with trained professionals who visit families' homes to provide support during pregnancy and the child's first three years of life. Home visitors teach parents about proper baby care, promote nurturing and attachment, practice effective parenting skills, and ensure parents have a solid understanding of healthy child development. They also counsel parents on achieving personal goals such as going back to school or securing a job.

In addition, Square One Healthy Families' home visitor, Shalonda Mabry was nominated for this year's Resiliency & Excellence in Service Award.

"Over the past three years, Shalonda has shown outstanding dedication to the Healthy Families Springfield program," says Joni Beck Brewer, VP of Families Services at Square One. "She continues to perform her duties with diligence, grace and the utmost humility. Shalonda comes in each day with a positive attitude and empowers other staff to make the best of each day. She consistently shares with her colleagues the importance of their work and shows them motivation, by dancing, singing and laughing at the joys and difficulties of the work they perform each day."

The Children's Trust is Massachusetts' leading statewide family support organization. They strengthen the Commonwealth by developing, evaluating, and promoting parenting education and coaching programs to improve the lives of children. With support from the Children's Trust, young children across Massachusetts can grow up in nurturing families and communities, healthy and ready to succeed.