Building Brighter Futures :: Resources For Developing Minds Initiative

Building Brighter Futures :: Resources For Developing Minds Initiative

Hey Mamas,

I’m not just sharing this because I am the Director of Community Health at United Way of Acadiana and the initiative lead- I genuinely love what we are doing as a community to raise kindergarten readiness and early childhood development.

If you’ve had a baby in the last 6 months at Lourdes Women’s and Children’s or Ochsner Lafayette General, you might have received a Resources for Developing Minds bag, all thanks to the collaboration between United Way of Acadiana, Lourdes, Ochsner, and our amazing community partners!

Picture this: a world where every parent has the tools to unlock their child’s brightest future. That’s the vision—empowering every parent, no matter their background, to support their little ones for a lifetime of achievements.

Did you know 85% of a child’s brain develops before age 3?

That’s why we’re providing resources for healthy brain development and early education. Newborns at these hospitals get a thoughtful “Resources for Developing Minds” gift—filled with books, toys, and tools to promote parent-child interactions, literacy, and language skills.

Building Brighter Futures :: Resources For Developing Minds Initiative

And here’s the best part: it’s not just about fun; these tools lay the groundwork for development!


Plus, every parent in Acadiana can access Bright By Text—a mobile service offering tips and activities for kids up to 8 years old, supported by United Way of Acadiana for additional resources.Building Brighter Futures :: Resources For Developing Minds Initiative

A heartfelt thanks ( in no particular order) to Lourdes, Ochsner, the William C. Schumacher Family Foundation, the Pugh Family Foundation, Stuller, Blue Cross Blue Shield, One Acadiana, Community Foundation of Acadiana, The Family Tree, Cecil J. Picard Center for Child Development and Lifelong Learning, Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Public Policy Center, LPSS and the Ready Start Network, LDH/ Office of Public Health, Dr. Brent Prather, The Studer Community Institute, Quint Studer, Build a Brain Build a Life Build a Community, Lafayette Policy Institute for Children, Acadian Ambulance, Dr. Ron Ferguson, Dr. Kenneth Habetz and many many others who have played a pivotal role in the implementation of this initiative. 

Building Brighter Futures :: Resources For Developing Minds Initiative

Marissa Winters
Marissa has lived in Lafayette since 2014 and quickly fell in love with Louisiana culture, community spirit and the amazing food!! Marissa is the Director of Healthy Acadiana at the United Way of Acadiana and loves to be the helper. Marissa has a 5 year old named Jackson and absolutely loves being his Mama. Follow along with them as they navigate the waters of school, co-parenting, and so much more.


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