Right! from the Start builds awareness of preterm birth and associated health outcomes, advocates for the needs of vulnerable children and families, and provides action-oriented and evidence-based education to improve maternal and child health services. Activities are concentrated in the Delta region of Northwest Mississippi, but this initiative has the potential to inform work across the state. After a two-year pilot phase, Right! from the Start is moving forward with an expanded focus, including the promotion of breast feeding, an important strategy for improving health for all children, especially those born prematurely.
Right! from the Start is a collaborative program between Women and Children’s Health Initiatives and the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi. It is funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The University of Mississippi Center for Population Studies (CPS) assists with this program by providing research, development, and evaluation services.
Under a subcontract, the CPS will contribute to the program this year by conducting research and helping to produce research briefs on preterm birth, socioeconomic stress, and breastfeeding that will be used as part of a training curriculum. The materials will be pilot-tested and used with healthcare students and professionals, including a spring workshop.