TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Five central Toledo neighborhoods are in the "hot zone" when it comes to infant mortality. A Healthy Lucas County Project is trying to reach new mothers living in these neighborhoods.
The project is recruiting 150 expecting mothers living in the 43604, 43608, 43609, 43611, and 43620 zip codes.
The moms-to-be will join home-visiting programs to support them in delivering healthy babies. These women are also eligible for rental assistance for up to 12 months, plus to $500 dollars for transportation, car care, and utilities.
"We try to make it as easy as possible for the mom. Initially, when they call our office, we do a phone screening because we make sure that we identify all the issues that you are dealing with, and make sure we connect you to the right agency who then will connect you to a community health worker," said Selena Coley, the program's coordinator.
From there, expecting moms schedule a visit with the health worker to learn ways to care for their new baby. A new mom says it was different inviting a stranger into her home. Yet she quickly became grateful for her support.
"At first it was a little strange, but we got to know each other more. We just became like she's my auntie or something," said new mother Robreyonna Johnson.
If you or an expecting mom you know would like the assistance the program offers, you can call 419-842-0800. The program's assistance is not limited to women living in the five zip-code area.