Train the Trainer Program
While the rate of infant mortality due to SIDS has been declining, the rates for non-Hispanic Black infants are still twice as high as that for non-Hispanic White infants. Additionally, the rate for other sleep-related infant deaths is more than three times that of non-Hispanic white infants.
Experts attribute this disparity to the lack of resources and education available to this community. Past efforts around pre- and post-natal health, safe sleep and breastfeeding have been simply presented as instructions without discussion with a “one size fits all” mentality. There has been a lack of recognition on the part of health care providers and educators that cultural, economic and societal factors impede the adoption of the recommendations.
What’s more, parents and caregivers have not been provided the reasoning or the “whys” surrounding the recommendations. Rather they’ve simply been presented as “rules.” Without allowing for a dialogue about the unique challenges a parent faces or follow-up to help provide solutions and support, adherence to regular pre-natal check-ups and healthy pregnancy habits, adoption of safe sleep practices and breastfeeding remains low.
First Candle has developed the Straight Talk for Infant Safe Sleep program that trains and fosters a collaboration between community leaders, social workers, public health providers and hospitals to educate new and expectant parents on how and why to create a safe sleep environment for their baby.
The program can be conducted in person (groups up to 25 participants) or online and consists of the following:
- Pre-test of current knowledge.
- A complete review of the AAP guidelines and the research behind them.
- Discussion of challenges and dynamics within their community as it relates to acceptance of guidance and services.
- Review and training of the Straight Talk approach.
Through role-play, participants gain an understanding of how to create a two-way conversation with parents, to first identify family practices and beliefs, provide accurate information about safe sleep and breastfeeding and gain acceptance of these practices.
Trainees also learn how to help parents create a plan how they can implement safe sleep and breastfeeding that considers their beliefs, values, and living and working situations, so they feel equipped to be successful.
A final and critical aspect is training participants on how to set up and successfully run Straight Talk parenting classes.
Post-test and support for first Straight Talk Parent classes.