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Region Stories from Gila River Indian Community

These stories illustrate how early childhood programs and services funded by First Things First make a difference for young children and families in communities across Arizona.

Family of mom, dad, baby and toddler sitting on couch.

First-time mom finds guidance in caring for infant son in Gila River Indian Community

  • home visitation

The FTF Gila River Indian Community Regional Council funds the Baby Smarts program that provides the family with a parent coach.

Mom with black tshirt holds her toddler daughter in her lap as they draw with markers.

Home visitation program helps teen mom from Coolidge care for her daughter

  • family support

The FTF Gila River Indian Community Regional Partnership Council funds the Well Child Family Care program to provide support to teen parents.

Sienna Whittington

Sienna Whittington is the 2020 Gila River Indian Community Champion

  • champion

Sienna Whittington has been selected as the 2020 First Things First Gila River Indian Community Champion for Young Children.The award is given to local…

Mother with two daughters

Gila River Indian Community child care center gets first 5-star Quality First rating for a tribal…

  • Quality First

The Early Education Child Care Center in Sacaton was one of the first centers chosen to participate in Quality First when the program began in 2009.

Mom hugging her two daughters

Quality First scholarships allow two sisters to access high-quality care

  • Quality First

Angelina Ramirez is a single mom who is determined to provide the best for her two daughters, Ella and Jewel. However, as a working mom, affording quality…

Mom with son

Sacaton teen finds support and compassion at Baby Smarts

  • family support

When high school teen Amy Rhodes found out she was pregnant, she worried about her baby’s future.She soon connected to Baby Smarts, a program funded by…

Home visits help Gila River teen parents keep toddler on track

  • parenting education

​​For Heidi Bruder, success comes in small doses. As the Teen Parent Case Manager for Gila River HealthCare, Bruder supports teen parents in the Gila River…

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