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The Home Visit Forum sought to increase delivery efficiency, develop practice benchmarks that can improve quality, and create a better understanding of the role that home visitation could play in state and national systems to help young children and their families.
Home visiting as a service delivery strategy had expanded greatly in the years before the project was established in 2000, but evaluative research had found mixed benefits. In a 1999 issue of The Future of Children journal, published by the Lucile and David Packard Foundation, recommendations called for home visitation programs to enhance the implementation and quality of their services.
The Home Visit Forum was a response to that call for action. A consortium of administrators, practitioners, and researchers, the Home Visit Forum participants represented six nationally based programs: Early Head Start (EHS), Healthy Families America (HFA), Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY), the Nurse–Family Partnership (NFP), Parents As Teachers (PAT), and the Parent–Child Home Program (PCHP).
Despite the unique attributes of each program, the use of home visitation as a delivery model means these organizations shared many common goals. Participants worked to create areas for cross program cooperation and learning that strengthen the home visit field as a whole, as well as enhance individual programs.