February 17, 2022
Helping a Family Grow: Reginalda's Story
Setting up a home for a new baby is a major undertaking, but if you’re lucky you may be able to re-use some items from a previous child. Cribs, clothes and bottles can be passed down from child to child, if they are up to date with safety guidelines and in good condition.
It’s more challenging when there’s an 11-year difference between your youngest child and the new arrival.
EveryStep community health specialist Berenice Reyes began working with her client, Reginalda, in January 2021. Reginalda was a single mother with a 15-year-old, an 11-year-old and another baby on the way. Although she had given birth before, it had been more than a decade previously and she contacted EveryStep because she needed updated baby items and current developmental information.
Berenice was able to connect Reginalda with EveryStep’s Healthy Start & Empowerment program, which provides case management to Polk County families who are pregnant or have a child up to the age of 6. Services include home visits; prenatal, postpartum and parenting education; child development screenings and education; prenatal depression screenings and referrals; support groups and referrals and assistance in accessing community resources.
“Besides my home visits, I was able to connect Reginalda with Stork’s Nest,” said Berenice. “I’m so thankful I had the chance to assist her and her loved ones.” Because Spanish is Berenice’s second language, she was able to easily converse and build trust with Reginalda, a native Spanish speaker.
EveryStep's Stork's Nest is an educational incentive program. Participants earn points for healthy behaviors such as keeping medical appointments, WIC participation, breastfeeding and school attendance. These points may be redeemed at the Stork's Nest for needed baby items such as diapers, clothing, strollers, cribs and car seats.
“The program has helped me because I have received information about my pregnancy, my baby and resources around the community,” said Reginalda. “[Berenice] is very kind and understands my needs, and always has my questions answered. I feel very happy with the program.”
Berenice says Reginalda has been successful because of her own initiative. “Reginalda always follows through with visits and applies suggestions I give her. She has expressed many times how helpful our program has been for her and her family.”
Reginalda’s involvement with EveryStep goes beyond receiving assistance for her family; she is also dedicated to giving back to the organization. Berenice approached her about modeling for some EveryStep promotional billboards in February of 2021. “Reginalda did not hesitate to give back in that way,” said Berenice. “I explained to her that our program benefits greatly when we can show how we help our families. I’m so thankful for her and for her allowing me to assist and help her loved ones.”
If you or someone you know needs care or support, call 515-558-9946 or complete the confidential "Find Care" form at www.everystep.org/find-care. The form sends a message to EveryStep staff who then follow up with a phone call. It's a great way to start a conversation and get answers with no cost or commitment. EveryStep can connect the individual to its own programs and services that may be helpful, as well as services offered by other organizations and providers in the community.
Pictured above: EveryStep community health specialist Berenice Reyes and Reginalda