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The Navarro County Early Childhood Coalition has created a guide for parents of young children during the COVID-19 crisis. The free, colorful booklet has 22 pages of ideas for staying at home, managing stress and making the best of changes to family routines. Topics include feeling safe, education, snacks, time management, advice from pediatricians and staying connected to the community.

The Navarro County Children’s Coalition formed in January when dozens of organizations met to explore partnerships. Its main focus is on safety, health, connection and school readiness to better the lives of children and families.

One of the organizers of the Navarro County Early Childhood Coalition is Presbyterian Children’s Homes and Services. Rachel Gillespie of PCHAS directs a program to teach parenting skills and develop self-sufficiency.

“This is a stressful time,” she said. “Parents may be worried about their income and children pick up on that. But children under six need a lot of attention, so the guide has tips for reducing stress and building a better bond between parent and child.”

Recently, the Coalition published a resource guide. While that booklet includes resources for medical care, transportation and other needs, this stay-at-home guide is all about what happens inside the home. Topics include snacks to keep hydrated and maintain stable blood-sugar levels; bedtime and TV time; guiding children to manage their emotions and healthy self-care for adults.

More information about the Navarro County Early Childhood Coalition is available at 903-229-4853. The stay-at-home guide may be viewed and downloaded at https://tinyurl.com/stayathomenavarrocounty.

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