The Project LAUNCH grant program requires that the population of focus be children from birth to eight years of age and their families.
Efforts to improve and integrate systems and enhance services should include not only those providers and settings serving children from birth to five years
child care, early education, primary care, Head Start) but also those systems serving children in the early elementary grades, including schools.
Efforts to create better linkages between early childhood providers and schools are often much needed, and can be instrumental in ensuring that supports and skills gained in the first five years of life can be sustained and built upon when children enter school.
Applicants must identify a geographic locality to serve as the local community for the grant.
Examples of local communities are towns, cities, counties, a cluster of zip codes or census tracts, a school district, tribal area or jurisdiction, or an Alaskan Village.
The chosen locality should be:
definable by clear geographic boundaries; have a cohesive service system with a set of entities that represent the required members of the Local Council; suitable for the implementation of the Project LAUNCH activities; and should not be so large in terms of population or geography that the project cannot make a significant impact on outcomes for children and families within that community.
Local communities are expected to have a dual focus on (1) making improvements to the early childhood system and (2) improving access to and availability of evidence-based prevention and wellness promotion practices (including traditional tribal practices that promote wellness).
Project LAUNCH focuses on preventing mental, emotional, and behavioral challenges and promoting healthy development and functioning.
Applicants will infuse mental health promotion practices and evidence-based prevention practices into primary care, early care and education, home visiting, and family settings.
Innovative and effective prevention/promotion practices at the local level will serve as models to be sustained and replicated throughout the state, territory, and tribe.
While Project LAUNCH aims to serve families with young children from birth through age eight, services may also be provided to pregnant women and their families if these efforts are in the service of ensuring the health or wellbeing of the child and family.
SAMHSA strongly encourages all grantees to provide a smoke tobacco-free workplace and to promote abstinence from all tobacco products (except in regard to accepted Tribal traditions and practices).