Providing Education and Support

FAMILY serves families in Pottawattamie County who are expecting a child or have a child under 5 years of age.   FAMILY was founded in 1991 under the umbrella of the Loess Hills Area Education Agency.

In 1998, a few dedicated community members convened a group of Pottawattamie county citizens to form an  Empowerment area.  FAMILY was the cornerstone of the family support envisioned by this group.

In 2007 as AEA 13 began a merger with AEA 14, Loess Hills AEA instituted the establishment of FAMILY as separate 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization in  order to provide more visible support to families of young children.

FAMILY is affliated with Parents As Teachers, Touchpoints, Infant Massage USA, and Happiest Baby.


Contact Sarena Dacus at or by phone at (712) 256-9566 for opportunities to donate or assist in our efforts  to have every child be healthy and successful, starting at birth.


FAMILY is dedicated to promoting healthy family lifestyles. We accomplish this through a variety of approaches:

• Healthy eating
• Healthy activities
• Healthy attachment and bonding
• Healthy and safe environments

 FAMILY is committed to assisting parents in their roles as their child’s first and most influential teacher through education and empowerment in:

Parent support through weekly home visitation:  Home visitation is provided by degreed and certified home visitors.  Home visits provide parent education and modeling for child development to assist parents in their role as their child’s first and most influential teacher.  Topics include: parenting skill development, home safety checks, developmentally appropriate activities for children, developmentally appropriate discipline techniques, and child health and nutrition information. In addition, home visitors are certified breastfeeding educators, infant massage instructors, trained in the Brazelton Newborn Behavioral Observation (Touchpoints), and Happiest Baby Educators to assist in crying prevention with fussy babies.  Assistance is also provided in connecting with community resources.

Group support and parenting education groups:  As part of the research-based program model, group has been offered since 1991.  FAMILY provides evidence-based parenting classes, support groups, and parent/child socialization groups to any family in Pottawattamie County either on-site or off-site.  For example, groups have been provided at Micah House, Phoenix House, and Promise Jobs.  A number of researched-based curricula including Circles of Security, Early Childhood Systematic Training and Education for Parenting, Active Parenting 1, 2, 3, Make Parenting a Pleasure, and the Nurturing program are utilized.  For group and class dates and times click here.  FAMILY also collaborates with organizations in the community to provide classes.  For more information about dates and times click here.

Child Passenger Safety:  Free car seat checks are offered every other month.

Maternal/Child Nursing Visits and Maternal Depression Screening

You can find a copy of our most recent newsletter for the community here and for our families here.

All services are provided by Certified Educators

To enroll call Janice Wright at (712) 256-9566

Check us out on Facebook at