Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Georgia Home Visiting Program?

The Georgia Home Visiting Program represents a milestone in the development and implementation of comprehensive, community-based systems for expectant parents, children birth to age five, and their families in Georgia. This program provides communities with a framework for reaching out to new and expectant families, offering support and services to improve the well-being of Georgia’s children and families.

The Georgia Home Visiting Program provides a welcome for every child, emphasizing prevention and early intervention services that are community-based and voluntary.

Who is behind The Georgia Home Visiting Program​?

The Georgia Home Visiting Program is spearheaded by the The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) which works throughout the state to meet the Governor’s goals of strengthening families —and The Georgia Home Visiting Program is the first step in this process. DPH received a Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program federal grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to implement evidence-based home visiting programs within maternal and early childhood systems in some Georgia communities. The Georgia Home Visiting Program provides the framework for a community-based system of supports and services within which home visiting programs are embedded. DPH provides a Central Intake function to help support the efforts of this initiative.

What services are available?

The Georgia Home Visiting Program connects expectant mothers, children, and their families to a range of services in the areas of evidence-based home visiting, maternal and child health, child safety, school readiness, community and family safety, and family economic self-sufficiency.

Where is the Georgia Home Visiting Program available?

This program is unfolding in various stages in communities across Georgia. Currently, seventeen counties have received funding to embed evidence-based home-visiting in their local system. This funding affords Georgia the opportunity to create a statewide home visiting infrastructure to expand and improve existing home visiting services, to replicate a home visiting model, and to link home visiting to other community efforts focused on promoting early childhood health and development. Other communities in Georgia are using existing resources to develop the system one step at a time.

Which counties are implementing the framework?

The counties are Bartow, Bibb, Chatham, Clarke, Crisp, DeKalb, Fulton, Glynn, Gordon, Houston, Liberty, Lowndes, McDuffie, Muscogee, Richmond, Rockdale and Whitfield.

Who is eligible for Great Start Georgia?

The Georgia Home Visiting Program is available to all expectant parents, children birth to age five, and their families in the seventeen counties listed above. Families desiring services and supports are linked with the specific community resources that they need. Evidenced-based home visiting services are available for families needing extra support for themselves and their children.

How are individuals or/families referred into Georgia Home Visiting?

Families may be referre in several ways. Community service providers, families, friends, neighbors or other interested community members may refer families to:

  • Local representatives designated by each county implementing the system. These representatives include home visiting program staff and district or local public health department staff.
  • The Information and Referral Center (IRC) through a toll-free number (1-855-707-8277).
  • The Georgia Home Visiting Program website which provides an online referral form.

Once a referral is made, the family will be contacted by a trained professional to assist in determining the next step in ensuring that family needs are met.

How are referrals made locally?

Designated community representatives are available to accept referrals from local child and family service providers and families within the community. Contact information for the community representatives is provided locally by partners and is also available through the Information and Referral Center at 1-855-707-8277 and the Georgia Home Visiting Program website.

What does the Information and Referral Center (IRC) provide?

The IRC increases the capacity of the system to identify families for screening and referral to needed services by:

  • Reviewing all birth certificates in Georgia Home Visiting Program communities in a timely manner and verifying birth certificate information.
  • Answering calls from families, providers, and other stakeholders daily and providing information on basic parenting and community resources.
  • Following-up on referrals made through the website within one business day.

What will happen when I click the blue door to the left for a referral?
When you click on the door to the left, you will be leaving the Georgia Home Visiting Program website and accessing the Information and Referral Center provided by the Georgia Department of Public Health.  You will be asked to provide a bit of information about yourself or the person whom you wish to link to Georgia's services for young children and families.  You can expect to be contacted by someone who will have thorough knowledge of services provided in your community and will ensure that steps for connecting to these services are clear.  

Is information on the Georgia Home Visiting Program available in languages other than English?

Yes. Spanish-speaking representatives are available at the IRC. Interpretation is also available at the IRC for a wide variety of languages. Brochures and other written materials are available in Spanish, as well.