First Steps is the State of Indiana’s early intervention system. Our program serves families with infants and toddlers (ages birth to three) who are experiencing developmental delays or have a diagnosed condition that has a high probability of resulting in a developmental delay. First Steps is funded by state and federal funds. Every family in Indiana, regardless of income or location, can access the First Steps program.
First Steps provides evaluations at no cost, to Indiana infants and toddlers, to assess how they are doing with their skills. We understand it is not always easy to recognize if your child is reaching his or age group. Some children may appear to be behind with speech progression, physical movements, or their attention span. When you’re not sure… Trust your Instincts.
First Steps Early Intervention Program FAQ
What does First Steps program offer?
- A free evaluation gives you valuable information on how your child is doing with their skills, and identifies any areas that your child might need some help with.
- services that typically take place in your child’s natural environment. Usually, this is your home, but it can also be places where you and your child spend time (e.g. your child’s daycare, grandparents home, local park, etc.) Our providers also try and provide some flexibility in scheduling their appointments to meet your family’s needs.
- a Service Coordinator who helps bring together the different people, information and resources that will support your child and family. Your Coordinator can also help identify resources in your community that will assist your family with a wide variety of social or financial issues.
- a variety of direct services and therapy that helps your child meet the outcomes that enable your child to participate in the regular routines and activities that are important to your family.
How do I make a referral?
There are many different ways to refer a child:
Office Hours 8:00am-4:30pm
Print out referral form on website and fax to 574-293-2300
Fill out and submit electronic referral on our website.
Who can refer a child to First Steps?
Any parent, family member, friend, doctor’s office or professional can refer a child to First Steps.
Does the program have a cost?
Yes, First Steps has a sliding fee scale. Cost is determined by family size and family income level. For more information on cost please contact our office or visit the state website at www.in.gov
and look for First Steps under Family and Health. There you will find the cost participation fee schedule.
What if my child is older than three?
First Steps services are only available to children three. If you have concerns for a child after three please talk with your doctor and call your local school system’s early childhood special education services program.