In Alabama, over 31 percent of children under the age of five live in poverty.
According to Zero to Three, a substantial portion of young children living in poverty are not getting the inputs they need to thrive, such as nutrition, shelter, and unhurried interactions and other enriching experiences with their parents or other adults. Poverty literally gets under the skin, undermining strong brain development as well as other physiological systems. The same research that finds brain differences in low- income children also finds a key protective ingredient: the parental-child relationship, which can buffer young children from the consequences of adverse experiences.
Reach Out and Read-Alabama reaches children and families like those served by Andrea and Bama Pediatrics, helping parents to structure a positive interaction with their child each day that will help that child build strong language skills.