Everyday life with young children is a whirlwind. Keeping kids safe, fed, and loved is a huge job. It’s hard to plan dinner, never mind finding the time and space to measure progress and set goals for your kids.
Julianna Rigg Hillard turns to Parent Trust for that.
“Parent Trust has become such a comfortable place for me,” says Julianna. “It’s a place to take all that normal parenting anxiety and turn it into something positive.”
Julianna and Dustin have three kids; Mikiah (7), Hannelore (4) and Miriam (1). Parent Trust has been part of their lives since they walked through our door for a Great Starts™ expectant parent class during Julianna’s first pregnancy.
The family has since returned for other classes including Sibling Preparation >> for both Mikiah and Hannelore.
But our Developmental Screening program is the one that is a part of the family’s life routine.
It was in that first expectant parent class that Julianna learned about the program. She signed up Mikiah immediately, and Hannelore and Miriam soon followed. “If you don’t know what’s going on how can you fix the problem?” she asks.
Developmental screenings give parents one-on-one parent coaching, activities customized for the child, a standardized assessment of child development, and a safe, open place to talk about parenting concerns.
Julianna stresses that Marni, the developmental screener she works with, is always informative, positive, and non-judgmental. And for the kids, it’s just playtime. If there is an area of concern, Julianna says she’d rather hear about it from Marni than any other way.
Julianna has been there.
At her 18-month screening, Hannelore showed indications of challenges in her communication skills.
“My first thought was ‘What did I do wrong?’ But Marni was reassuring, laying out the facts and the recommendations,” says Julianna.
Marni and Julianna discussed all the options, and in the end Julianna and Dustin opted to start Hannelore with a speech therapist. Today, at 4, Hannelore is on track with her peers. Julianna credits Parent Trust –
“It made a big difference,” she says. “Without Marni, I wouldn’t have known we had a problem till much later on.”
Recently the family celebrated Miriam’s 1st birthday. Born premature, Miriam is now thriving. Having Marni on Miriam’s team gives Julianna great peace of mind and was natural for her to make a screening appointment at Parent Trust into part of the day-long birthday celebration. In addition to her parents, both sets of Miriam’s grandparents were able to attend, much to our staff’s delight.
Julianna is passionate about sharing her experiences with Parent Trust.
“Every family should know about the screenings and have access to all these services. They are life changing. It’s not just about families that look like mine – Parent Trust is for everyone.”
Parent Trust offers free screenings for all children between 1 month and 5 ½ years.
Find Out More about our Developmental Screenings >>
Find Out More about all our Great Starts™ classes >>