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Make First Contact


On this page, you will discover the first steps in a family's partnership with Early Steps.  The steps include family referral, family-centered intake, and first contact.

What is making first contact?

First contacts with families set the stage for a collaborative partnership and build understanding about how early intervention is provided through Early Steps.

Part 1: Promote Family Referral 

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A family's first introduction to Early Steps may be through a referral source such as a pediatrician, early care and education provider, or other individuals who know the child. Families can also initiate their own referral. The referral process is an important initial contact and connection among the primary referral source, Early Steps, and the family. Strengthening connections and building collaborative partnerships among primary referral sources and the family helps ensure appropriate referrals, early identification of eligible children, and timely access to supports and services. 

Part 2: Conduct Family-Centered Intake

The intake process is often the first experience a family has with Early Steps after referral. It sets the stage for collaborative and trusting partnerships between the family and the Early Steps program. Family-centered practices should be used as part of initial exchanges of information about families' priorities, Early Steps services and supports, and how services and supports are provided to support child development and learning during everyday routines. 

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Part 3: First Contact - Share Early Steps
Principles and Practices 

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First contact with families involves: (a) beginning to build collaborative and trusting partnerships between the family and their Early Steps team, (b) introducing the family to Early Steps and Florida Embedded Practices and Intervention with Caregivers (FL-EPIC), (c) informing families of their rights, (d) conducting a developmental screening (if necessary), and (e) describing next steps.   

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