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Help Me Grow National Center

Business Plan for Replication


Help Me Grow National Center


Business Plan for Replication


How does the original site of a multi-state initiative transform itself into a national center and develop a plan for expanding its reach and impact?

Help Me Grow logo



Help Me Grow sought to expand its impact.  Established in 1998 in Connecticut, Help Me Grow expanded into five additional states in 2008. Then, the W.K.Kellogg Foundation supported Help Me Grow in expanding to 10 additional states. Help Me Grow recognized the need to develop a business plan to guide its strategic growth with long-term sustainability in mind.

In particular, Help Me Grow wanted to better understand how to build a sustainable national center, and articulate the specific activities the center would undertake to support a growing network of states. Help Me Grow leadership also wanted to define the optimal relationship between the states and the national center, and develop a long-term strategy for financial sustainability nationally and within the states.


Root Cause worked with Help Me Grow to craft a strategic business plan to guide the national expansion, the creation of the Help Me Grow National Center, and the development of a sustainable model for future growth and impact. As part of this, our team worked with the leadership team to articulate the major strategies of the National Center and define the core components and structural requirements of the Help Me Grow system. Consultants also developed a step-by-step action plan and financial model for the National Center.

Root Cause stayed with Help Me Grow to support the implementation of the business plan. Our team updated action plans as Helped Me Grow progressed, and we continued advising the leadership on revenue strategies as the plan was underway.

Goals & Results

At the start of our engagement, Help Me Grow was in a total of seven states. Currently, more than 28 states are affiliates of the National Network and receive ongoing technical assistance from the Help Me Grow National Center to implement the Help Me Grow model and diffuse innovative system enhancements.

Help Me Grow is widely recognized by multiple federal agencies for its innovative approach to the promotion of children’s optimal healthy development through systemic change, and has been integrated into major national initiatives including the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program and Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems grant, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Project LAUNCH, and the U.S. Department of Education’s Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge grant.


Children's Hospital of Orange County
U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services Encourage States to Adopt an Early Childhood System Model, like CHOC Children’s Help Me Grow

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Connecticut Children's Medical Center
Help Me Grow National Center Secures Generous Investment to Mitigate Impact of Poverty on Young Children and Families

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Bringing “Help Me Grow” to North Carolina

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About the Partner

Help Me Grow National Center

Help Me Grow National Center is the only national organization working to coordinate services system-wide in the early childhood sector while providing access to a broad range of interventions specifically targeting vulnerable children and families. The Help Me Grow model was developed by Paul H. Dworkin, MD in 1997 and pilot tested in Hartford, Connecticut. It expanded statewide in 2002 and is now adopted by 28 affiliate states that receive technical assistance and support from Help Me Grow National Center at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.  The nationwide Help Me Grow affiliate network serves more than 81,000 children and families each year through centralized access points where care coordinators field questions from physicians and caregivers, connect families to services, and follow up to ensure such services are beneficial. In addition, Help Me Grow affiliates reach more than 150,000 families through targeted outreach events and media campaigns each year.

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