Food For Thought 2022

2022 Food For Thought Series

First3Years has been offering Food for Thought (FFT)  training events for more than 35 years. This interactive series highlights current applied research and best practices offering thought-provoking topics (or “food for thought”). 


Members: $10

Non-Members: $15

Student*: $5



Promoting Early Relational Health Across Child Health and Early Childhood Systems

with David W. Willis, MD, FAAP

April 15 | 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Advancing early relational health (ERH) is not about a program, but rather, a movement.  The science of child development and neuroscience makes clear that the future health, development, and wellbeing of all children require safe, stable, and nurturing early relational experiences from birth.  The recent AAP Policy Statement calls for a focus on early relational health to buffer adversity and build resilience and notes that pediatric care is on the cusp of a paradigm shift that reprioritizes clinical activities, rewrites research agendas, and realigns policy agendas. As such, promoting relational health and preventing toxic stress are two sides of the same coin.  ERH is not a new field nor a separate professional practice but rather an expanded and intentional focus garnered from the knowledge, research, and wisdom within IECMH, neurodevelopment, and related fields, and important for all early childhood programs and family supports.  This presentation will bring a discussion of ERH, current practice-based opportunities, and the many opportunities to be considered and championed across Texas.


infant/young child & family-centered practice | relationship-based practice | cultural competence

Pathways to Mitigate Toxic Stress & Build Resiliency Through Early Relational Health

with Dr. David O’Banion

May 6 | 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Early relational health is an important part of how young children develop, but what happens when children are in the middle of toxic stress? Is resiliency possible? Absolutely, this training will explore how we foster resiliency in children and families in our respective roles.


infant/young child development & behavior | infant/young child & family-centered practice | relationship-based practice

Analyzing ERH in the Context of Your Work with Families

with Jessica Riggs,PhD

June 3 | 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Early Relational health should be at the forefront of all early childhood professionals’ minds. This training will attendees explore their role in promoting early relational health to help families and children develop well from the start.


screening & assessment | infant/young child & family-centered practice | relationship-based practice

How to Speak to Families About Early Relational Health Concerns

July 1 | 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

How do professionals have difficult conversations with families? How do professionals reveal early concerns to parents and caregivers? This training will explore the intricacies of what may feel like difficult conversations with families.


infant/young child & family-centered practice | relationship-based practice | responding with empathy