Healthy Families Illinois - DHS 4447

Helping Families. Supporting Communities. Empowering Individuals.

State of Illinois
Department of Human Services

Effective home visiting services, supporting healthy child development and positive parent/child interaction.

Healthy Families Illinois, for the prevention of child- abuse and neglect

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services the following factors increase the likelihood that a child will be abused or neglected:

  • Inaccurate knowledge of child development
  • Negative attitudes about a child's behavior
  • Stressful life events, domestic violence, single parenting
  • Poverty, unemployment and social isolation

Healthy Families Illinois reduces child abuse and neglect by:

  • Strengthening the parent-child relationship
  • Helping parents to develop realistic expectations for their children
  • Improving family support systems and teaching effective problem-solving skills
  • Supporting healthy child growth and development

What is Healthy Families Illinois?

Healthy Families Illinois (HFI) is a voluntary, intensive home visiting program that provides parental coaching designed to support families and reduce the risk of child abuse and neglect.

The HFI program model is based on the national Healthy Families America (HFA) research-based best practices*, which are categorized as follows:

  • Service initiation - Services are initiated to a targeted population pre-natally or shortly after the birth of the baby.
  • Service content - Services are comprehensive, culturally sensitive and designed to improve parent child interaction, support parents and promote child health and development.
  • Staff characteristics - Services are provided by staff who receive intensive supervision and extensive role-specific training.

* The Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) has reported that the Healthy Families program produces measurable benefits by participants in areas such as parent-child interaction and parental capacity.

How does Healthy Families Illinois work?

Through a collaborative network of community partners, expectant and new parents are referred to Healthy Families Illinois (HFI) providers.

If appropriate, Healthy Families Illinois program services are offered to expectant/new parents. If accepted, the home visitor works with parents to establish a trusting relationship that allows her/him to help enhance family functioning, promote healthy child development, strengthen the parent child relationship and support the parents as the children's first teachers.A trusting relationship is established with the family that promotes healthy child development, strengthens the parent-child relationship, and supports parents as the children's first teachers.

Families enrolled in HFI receive weekly visits in the home, for at least six months following the birth of the baby. After this period, the frequency and duration of the visits is determined by the needs of the family.

Healthy Families Illinois providers serve areas within the following counties.

Map showing the following counties in Orange: Stephenson, Winnebago, Boone, Lake, Carroll, Whiteside, Dekalb, Kane, DuPage, Cook, Rock Island, Henry, Will, Stark, Kankakee, Peoria, Tazewell, McLean, Livingston, Ford, Iroquois, Adams, Sangamon, Macon, Dewitt, Piat, Champaign, Vermilion, Macoupin, Madison, Bond, Fayette, Clay, St. Clair, Marion, Jefferson, Perry, Franklin, Williamson, Alexander, Pulaski

How to learn more about HFI?

For information about Healthy Families Illinois go to

For more information

Call or visit your Illinois Department of Human Services' Family Community Resource Center (FCRC).

If you have questions about any Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) program, call or visit your FCRC. We will answer your questions. If you do not know where your FCRC is or if you are unable to go there, you may call the automated helpline 24 hours a day at:


1-800-447-6404 (TTY)

You may speak to a representative between: 8:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Monday - Friday (except state holidays)

For answers to your questions, you may also write:

Illinois Department of Human Services
Bureau of Customer and Provider Assistance
100 South Grand Avenue East
Springfield, Illinois 62762

Visit our web site at:

Programs, activities and employment opportunities in the Illinois Department of Human Services are open and accessible to any individual or group without regard to age, sex, race, sexual orientation, disability, ethnic origin or religion. The department is an equal opportunity employer and practices affirmative action and reasonable accommodation programs.

DHS 4447 (R-05-13) Healthy Families Illinois

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