Manatee County Government Administrative Center Commission Chambers, First Floor 9:00 a.m. - May 17, 2016
May 17, 2016 - Work Session
Agenda Item #3

Whole Child Manatee

Briefing Provided Upon Request

Contact and/or Presenter Information
Patricia Johnson, Whole Child Coordinator, x3059

Action Requested
Report on the relationship of Whole Child Manatee to the Food Desert and ALICE reports.

Enabling/Regulating Authority

Background Discussion
  • Through an initiative of Lawton Chiles, who served as Florida’s Governor from 1991 through 1998, his wife, Rhea Chiles, created The Lawton Chiles Foundation to continue the Governor’s commitment to children by assisting communities to become Whole Child Communities.
  • Whole Child Manatee views services and programs as a continuum of care, not as isolated services. It’s this holistic approach to addressing care that makes all the difference in achieving positive outcomes for parents and children.
  • Individually, many agencies and organizations serve one dimension of children’s well being, from immunizations to early learning programs. Embracing the idea that we must nurture the Whole Child requires the entire community working together.
  • Whole Child works with partners like the Health Department and United Way of Manatee County, Inc., to reach children and families that are impacted by ALICE and Food deserts.
  • Whole Child Manatee works within the following six interactive dimensions that make up a WHOLE CHILD.
    • Physical and Mental Health means more than the absence of disease. Health is active, alive, and vital. It is the presence of well-being and dignity in the lives of children and families.
    • Social Interaction and Competence: The building blocks for successful relationships and a healthy sense of self begins when a child is an infant. Emotional skills, such as confidence, curiosity, and a sense of relatedness are critical elements in a child's ability to interact with others. This includes playing and developing relationships with peers, interacting with caregivers and parents, adapting to a variety of environments, and learning about the larger world.
    • Quality Education: It is no accident that children's minds are compared to sponges as they soak up the world around them. Parents are their first and most influential teachers, whether it is in everyday educational moments or choosing the right child care program. Using tools available through Whole Child helps you create and seek out environments rich in stimulation for your child's growing mind.
    • Safe and Nurturing Environment; a safe home, a safe neighborhood, a safe park and green space to play and interact with family, friends, and neighbors connects children to a larger world and builds a foundation for a healthy community. Personal health depends on environmental wellness too.
    • Spiritual Foundation and Strength helps a child develop the sense that their life is meaningful and has purpose; that ethics, values, and morals can guide them and give them meaning and direction.
    • Economic Stability: Economically stable families have: a lower rate of divorce; a lower rate of domestic violence and abuse; a lower likelihood of chronic illness; children who are better prepared for school, more likely to stay in school and continue higher education or training; and children who are less likely to have children out of wedlock.
  • The Whole Child Coordinator is housed in the Community Services Department of Manatee County.  Four Whole Child Advisors are available throughout the Community to assist families in the coordination of services.  The Advisors are employees of the Manatee Community Action Agency.  They assist families with all needs and help them complete profiles which provide links to services.
  • Whole Child Manatee stays focused on identifying gaps in service for our most vulnerable children.

County Attorney Review
Not Reviewed (No apparent legal issues)

Explanation of Other

Reviewing Attorney

Instructions to Board Records

Cost and Funds Source Account Number and Name

Amount and Frequency of Recurring Costs

Attachment:  Slide Presentation - Whole Child.pdf
Attachment:  Follow Up Memo - Whole Child Manatee.pdf