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Michigan Parent Leadership

Case Study
October 6, 2021

This case study describes Michigan’s parent leadership program model, one that was 30 years in the making. The model, a concept tested over the last eight years, can be replicated within any early childhood system or program.

Click on the following links to access Parent Leadership Blogs.

Effie Alofoje-Carr
Effie Alofoje-Carr is a proud native of Detroit, MI who currently coordinates the Ingham Local Leadership, serving the Lansing, MI area in maternal, infant, and child health and education. She is an author, speaker, and women’s event host, inspiring women to make over their lives to live out their dreams. She has worked as a legal advocate for survivors of domestic violence and as an outreach coordinator of after school programming for young girls. Effie holds a B.A. from Michigan State University. She and her husband are parents of a brilliant and active 7-year-old son.

Monica Gaines
Monica Gaines lives in Wayne County, MI with her husband Nathaniel and their son Nate. She began her journey into home visiting in 2013 when she joined the Healthy Families program in Wayne County. She became a parent leader in 2015 when she joined the advisory board and the Local Leadership Group. She went on to also join the State Local Leadership Parent Leader Team. In 2017, Monica was hired as the Healthy Families Program senior program assistant and most recently has also taken on the role of parent coordinator with the Early Childhood Investment Corporation.

Sarah Zyburt
Sarah Zyburt, mother of a seven-year-old child, is from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and now lives in Flint. She serves on the Michigan Parent Leaders in State Government workgroup, and Postpartum Support International, Michigan. Formerly, she served as a parent leader on her Home Visiting Local Leadership Group, the Great Start Collaborative for Genesee County and the Statewide Parent Leaders group for home visiting in Michigan. Sarah enjoys volunteering as a co-facilitator for a local postpartum support group for new moms as well as with the Parent Coalition in Flint and Genesee County.


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