Phoenix parenting expert receives coveted award from Parents as Teachers
Jasmine Gonzalez, an early childhood home visiting professional with Chicanos Por La Causa Parenting (CPLP) of Phoenix, has received the Parents as Teachers (PAT) 2022 Parent Educator of the Year Award for her work strengthening families and nurturing children.
Gonzalez accepted the honor during PAT’s recent international conference in Denver, CO. The Parent Educator of the Year Award is distinguished by the outstanding contributions parent educators make to children and families served by PAT and honors those who show exemplary work supporting the PAT mission.
“I want to thank Parents as Teachers for honoring me with this prestigious award,” said Gonzalez. “Nothing brings me more joy and purpose than seeing a mother and father grow in their confidence as parents. This award reminds me of why I do what I do for the families we serve.”
PAT is a St. Louis, Missouri-based non-profit international organization whose evidence-based early childhood home visiting model is the most replicated in the world. It is designed to promote child and maternal health, prepare young children for first-time school entry, and prevent child abuse and neglect by strengthening families through family engagement, and impactful parenting.
Parent educators are trained in PAT’s home visiting model. They make personal home visits to help new mothers and fathers, caregivers of young children, grandparents, foster caregivers, aunts/uncles, and same-sex couples, with parenting skills.
For more than five years, Gonzalez has worked with families in various settings. Her work started with conducting research among Spanish-speaking families and children while pursuing her undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Family & Human Development. Through that experience, she discovered a passion for working with children and learning to see the world through their eyes. This passion has been a driving force in all of her work with the families she serves.
Constance Gully, PAT’s president, and chief executive officer said the organization is honored to recognize Gonzalez for her uncompromising dedication to improving the lives of children and families in and around Phoenix.
“The work that Jasmine and all of our parent educators do in helping with children’s early language and cognition is directly associated with later school performance and success in life,” Gully said, adding, “Jasmine is deserving of this award because of the hard work and countless hours she puts in helping children reach their full potential, and for her commitment to our mission.”
In addition to Gonzalez, this year’s Parent Educator of the Year Award recipients included Jamie Castro Rodriguez of the Northwest ISD Family Involvement PAT program in Fort Worth, TX; Kathy Bartell of Parenting Communities at the Benzie Leelanau District Health Department in Lake Leelanau, MI. and Kim Trower of Hampton Healthy Families in Hampton, VA.
About 1,400 early childhood professionals attended the PAT conference in Denver and encouraged the exchange of ideas, all concentrated on early childhood home visiting and facilitated through more than 90 workshops and panel discussions.
Under the theme Ain’t No Mountain High Enough: Helping Families Move Mountains, presenters and workshops focused on topics and themes such as community engagement, collaborations and partnerships, diversity, equity and inclusion, health and wellness, parenting, and child development, serving multi-cultural groups, and parenting in a digital world.
Chicanos Por La Causa was inspired by Dolores Huerta and Cesar Chavez in 1969 to fight discrimination against the Mexican American community. Today, the organization provides services to people of all backgrounds while honoring its Mexican American roots.
The PAT program at CPLP is a trusted resource for organizations and professionals and a leader in the on-ground and virtual home visiting field. It is available at no cost to any family in the service area with a child aged birth through kindergarten entry.
About Parents as Teachers
Parents as Teachers (PAT) builds strong communities, thriving families, and children that are healthy, safe, and ready to learn by matching parents and caregivers with trained professionals who make regular personal home visits during a child’s earliest years in life, from pregnancy through kindergarten. The internationally recognized evidence-based home visiting model is backed by 38 years of research-proven outcomes for children and families. PAT currently serves nearly 210,000 families in all 50 U.S. states, 115 Tribal organizations, five other countries, and one U.S. territory.