Model effectiveness research report last updated: 2016
Evidence of model effectiveness
This model meets the criteria established by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for an “evidence-based early childhood home visiting service delivery model” for both general and tribal populations.
Family Spirit is designed for American Indian pregnant women and families with children younger than age 3. It can also be used with non-Native populations with high maternal and child behavioral health disparities. It aims to promote mothers’ parenting skills while assisting them in developing coping and problem-solving skills to overcome individual and environmental stressors. The curriculum, which incorporates traditional tribal teachings, consists of 63 lessons organized into six domains: (1) prenatal care, (2) infant care, (3) child development, (4) toddler care, (5) life skills, and (6) healthy living. Family Spirit recommends initiating the program with weekly visits by at least 28 weeks of gestation and tapering to bimonthly visits until the child’s third birthday. Paraprofessional home visitors conduct the visits, which typically last 45 to 90 minutes. Family Spirit recommends that home visitors be members of the participating community and have familiarity with the local or tribal culture, traditions, and language(s). For more information, please read the Model Overview.