Children and Family Services

EARLY INTERVENTION Infants and toddlers with special needs receive services to enhance their early development including special instruction, physical, occupational and speech therapies,
nutritional consultations and other family supports.

These services are provided in the home, at the child’s daycare center or other locations in the community. GES provides the EI program in Mobile and Baldwin County with funding from the Alabama Department of Rehab Services. Call (251) 300-6173 for more information.

CHILD DEVELOPMENT CENTERS GES operates two inclusive child development centers in Mobile. Children of all abilities receive high quality instruction with small child-staff ratios. Programming includes Special Education Preschool (Part B) services through the local school system, Early Headstart classrooms and an Alabama “First Class” Voluntary PreK classroom. Call (251) 380-7169 for more information.

MILITARY RESPITE Air Force and Navy personnel participating in the Exceptional Family Member Program are eligible for monthly in-home respite services provided by qualified care givers at no charge to the family.  Services are provided to active military families in Florida stationed at Eglin AFB and Hurlburt Field (Ft. Walton), Pensacola Naval Air Station and Tyndall AFB (Panama City). Call (850) 474-0030 for more information.

HIPPY (Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters) is a nationally certified home visitation program and is provided in Baldwin and Escambia Counties. The goal is to encourage and support families in their child’s early education by providing weekly home visits, literacy materials and linkages to community resources. The Baldwin County Program includes a Spanish language version of the curriculum serving a small group of migrant families. Call (251) 210-1336 for more information.

FIRST TEACHER The First Teacher Program provides bi-weekly home visits to families with children birth to five, living in underserved communities in Mobile County in efforts to improve health and developmental outcomes for at risk children. The program utilizes an evidence based model (Parents As Teachers) and includes services and resources aimed at improved health, child maltreatment prevention, child wellness, and school readiness. Parent Educators provide case management, information, support and encouragement to families to help their children develop optimally during the crucial early years of life. The program is funded by the Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education and the Mobile County School System. Call (251) 380-7169 for more information.

FAMILY LITERACY Preschoolers from all areas of Mobile and Baldwin County are visited by Goodwill Easterseals staff and community volunteers for a “Read to Me” story time on Friday mornings. Screened volunteers read to children and help them with an art activity that is based on the reading.  Each child receives their own copy of the book with a take-home “Parent Packet” that includes suggestions on how parents can engage children when reading. In a separate Family Literacy program, Goodwill Easterseals partners with Family Promise to conduct family storytimes, to provide books, art activities and supplies to homeless families in the Mobile area. The goal is to increase protective factors for families by providing social connections and by supporting literacy skills that are essential to the development of a family. Call (251) 380-7169 for more information.

PARENT EDUCATION AND SUPPORT Monthly educational meetings provide information and resources on various topics of interest to families and area service providers (dinner and child-care for each meeting is provided at no cost).  Families living in Mobile and Baldwin County with children with special needs are invited to take advantage of bi-monthly respite services provided at the Springhill CDC. GES sponsors seasonal Family Enrichment events throughout the community to promote inclusion of children with special needs, encourage socialization and to further parental connections.

Goodwill Easterseals collaborates with the Autism Society of Alabama to host quarterly Autism Networking meetings. These meetings are designed to support caregivers of children on the Autism Spectrum. Call (251) 380-7169 for more information.