JUNCTION CITY, Kan. (KSNT) – A local nonprofit is working to keep healthy families and healthy communities in Geary County.
For almost nine years, Delivering Change has worked with mothers throughout their pregnancy and beyond to help them make sure they know how to stay healthy and take care of their baby.
It all started in 2012 when a certified nurse/midwife and other community agencies got together because Junction City had a high infant mortality rate. They looked at the data and tried to understand what exactly that meant. From that, came an action plan which was Delivering Change.
The first two years of the organization involved only volunteers. Delivering Change got a large grant back in 2014, which allowed them to expand.
Executive Director Jill Nelson said the infant mortality rate decreased by 50 percent in the first five years.
Nelson and her husband lost their first son to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in 2006. The first statistics of the infant mortality rate in the county included their son Luke.
She said that’s lead her to feel a calling to this work.
“It’s private practice, it’s the hospital, it’s our public health entities, it’s our school district. All of those entities go together is what’s really made the change here in our community is the fact that we all work together,” Nelson said. “We’re on the same page, we’re delivering the same messages. And so that’s really turned the page, I believe, here in Geary County.”
Delivering Change isn’t just for mothers. They work with fathers too. They have a fatherhood coordinator who teaches fatherhood classes in the community and more.
If you’re interested in learning more about the program, click here.