Our Work

Workforce Development


CHDI is helping to build a competency-based, trained workforce that actively promotes infant and early childhood mental health in the settings where young children receive services.

This work is being done in partnership with the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC) and the Connecticut Association for Infant Mental Health (CT-AIMH) and includes the following.

Training for Early Care and Education Providers

  • In-person training
    CT-AIMH is training early care and education providers in infant and early childhood mental health. Training focuses on understanding the importance of brain development, how temperament affects each child’s personality, the importance of play, understanding the importance of healthy social and emotional development, how to identify social and emotional developmental delays, and how to work with parents. It also provides resources to refer parents to appropriate interventions.
  • Online training
    The KidsMentalHealthInfo.com website includes online training resources for health and early care and education providers specific to infant and early childhood mental health and maternal depression.

Training for Health Providers (EPIC)

Educating Practices In the Community (EPIC) is CHDI’s training initiative to inform pediatricians and their staff about critical children’s health issues – right in the comfort of their own offices. Several EPIC modules are available to child health sites across Connecticut, including:

Physicians who complete the EPIC trainings are eligible to receive Continuing Medical Eduation and Maintenance of Certification credits.

Infant Mental Health Competencies

CHDI is helping the CT-AIMH build a system for Connecticut to support a competency-based early childhood workforce. This effort is based on the CT-AIMH Endorsement (IMH-E®).

The intent of the Endorsement is to recognize and document the development of infant and family professionals within an organized system of culturally sensitive, relationship-based, infant mental health learning and work experiences. The general categories of competency include:

  • Theoretical Foundations (including pregnancy and early parenthood; relationship-focused therapeutic practice; family relationships and dynamics; cultural competence)
  • Law, Regulation & Agency Policy
  • Systems Expertise
  • Direct Service Skills (including observation and listening; screening and assessment)
  • Working with Others
  • Communicating
  • Thinking
  • Reflection

Through this effort, the number of professionals endorsed in Connecticut is expected to greatly expand over the next five years. This will result in more of the State’s child-serving programs and systems being able to support and advance the social and emotional development of children beginning in their earliest years.

Contact us to learn more about our workforce development efforts.