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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Celebrate Dona Ana County Head Start Awareness Month

Children, families and staff from the Dona Ana County Head Start program, locally administered through New Mexico State University, will don red ribbons to join with Head Start centers from across the country in celebrating Head Start Awareness Month in October.

a County Head Start was initiated in 1984 as a comprehensive preschool program that is federally funded through the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration on Children, Youth and Families. Today, the program serves children and families of limited income as well as children with disabling conditions, between the ages of 3 and 5, from centers in Mesilla, Anthony, Vado, Las Cruces and on the New Mexico State campus.

In addition to providing educational services to children and families, Dona Ana County Head Start provides nutritional, medical, dental, mental health, parent involvement, transition and disability services to 258 participating families.

"Head Start has had a tremendous impact on improving the lives of children and families in our county," said Mary Jane Embury, director of the Dona Ana County Head Start program.

Embury said that the strength of the program lies not only in the comprehensive early childhood program and promotion of early literacy, but also in the awareness of improved health care for young children.

"Head Start continues to foster a greater awareness among parents as to the needs of their preschool child," she said.

Head Start classes operate four days a week from mid-August to mid-May. For more information call (505) 647-8733.