Preschool Support

Early childhood is a crucial stage of life in an individual’s overall development.

Mindful of this reality, the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador Health and Social Services Commission (FNQLHSSC) has developed its 2007-2017 Blueprint in close collaboration with the communities and authorities involved, setting aside a prominent place for creating and maintaining preschool support programs.

First Nations Head Start Program

The First Nations Head Start Program (FNHSP) supports the implementation of local programs, which are designed within the communities, and which may promote self-esteem and foster the desire to learn in preschoolers.

The FNHSP has set forth an overall (holistic) approach, which takes into consideration all available services and factors that influence child development, thereby allowing for greater effectiveness of the resources and respect for the diversities of each community.

The FNHSP fosters the following:

  • Identifying the needs of each child (including children with special needs);
  • Healthy and continued development of children and families;
  • Valuing parents, guardians, and extended family;
  • Internal and external collaboration and partnership with the communities.

The FNHSP consists of 6 interrelated components to ensure a greater effectiveness of actions taken.

Language and Culture

This component is intended to develop a sense of belonging in children and a sense of pride in their identity as First Nations members. This is accomplished by providing children with opportunities to take part in cultural events and learn the language of their community, as well as by teaching them to be open to other peoples and cultures.

Education

The educational component is intended to stimulate children’s desire to learn and adequately prepare them for school, by providing them with age-appropriate learning opportunities which take into consideration the physical, spiritual, emotional, intellectual and social dimensions of education.

Health

The health component is designed to preserve and promote children’s health and wellness in every aspect by focusing on

  • Prevention through
    • Physical examinations,
    • Immunization campaigns,
    • Screening,
    • Interventions made by skilled professionals who take traditional knowledge into consideration;
  • Development of motor skills;
  • Adoption of an active lifestyle.

Nutrition

The purpose of this component is to encourage children to adopt long-term healthy eating habits which help them to grow properly. This is accomplished with the assistance of nutritionists who follow the recommendations in Canada’s Food Guide – First Nations, Inuit and Métis, and who emphasize the importance of time devoted to meals.

Social Support

The purpose of this component is to inform young families on the wide range of available resources designed to help improve their quality of life by

  • Promoting the services provided;
  • Identifying the actual needs of First Nations children;
  • Building a concrete link between service providers and the communities.

Parental Support

The parental component is intended to provide families with support by recognizing and valuing the roles of parents, guardians, and extended family (elders, cultural and traditional teachers) as first educators and key players.

Publications and Information

Preschool workers are invited to consult the various publications made available to them on our Internet site.

For more information on the FNHSP, or on other initiatives involving children under school age, you may contact Ms. Julie Taillon,

  • Either by telephone at 418 842-1540, extension 2605,
  • Or by email at the following address: jtaillon@cssspnql.com.