Healthy Babies Project was founded in 1990 by going into poor D.C. neighborhoods and offering prenatal services to expectant women and families, thereby reversing and even eliminating the senseless loss of life in our nation’s capital that stems from economic and cultural disparities. HBP aims to reduce the District’s dangerously high rates of low birth weight, infant illness, infant mortality, and teen pregnancy, equip disadvantaged families to support themselves, and to be a bridge to building stronger family units.
The District of Columbia has among the highest infant mortality rates and low birth weight rates in the nation. In target wards, infant mortality averages 15.1 per 1,000 live births (compared with 6.4 per 1,000 nationwide) and low birth weight averages 13% (compared with 8.3 % nationwide). HBP works with pregnant women who have no access to health care, educational, or social services opportunities. HBP connects these pregnant women (mostare teenagers) one-on-one for support and mentoring to have healthy babies and build productive lives.
Today, this groundbreaking, comprehensive support system has become a model program providing an unprecedented combination of services for pregnant women and their children that ensure healthy birth outcomes and lead families to productive, future-filled lives. For more than two decades, HBP has reached out to high-risk, low-income, pregnant and parenting women, men, and families and has brought them to care. Each year, HBP services directly or indirectly improve health and well-being for 1,500+ District residents.