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Healthy Start Initiative

The mission of the Healthy Start Systems is to promote the health and well-being of women, children, and families in the City of Boston, particularly those living in communities that are disproportionately impacted by infant mortality and other health disparities.

The Boston Health Start Initiative (BHSI) provides direct support to pregnant and parenting women, children and families. It provides care coordination, connection to resources, health education, and advocacy.

BHSI also coordinates the Community Action Network (CAN). CAN is a community coalition focused on reducing inequities in infant mortality and poor birth outcomes through policy strategies.


BHSI is a free and voluntary program. It is open to self-identified black women in Boston who are pregnant or parenting children up to the age of 18 months.

Women enrolled in BHSI work one on one with staff called "Family Partners". Family Partners support participants in having healthy pregnancies and healthy babies.

Other ways Family Partners provide support include:

  • Discussing information related to healthy pregnancies, infant health, and parenting. This includes prenatal nutrition, breastfeeding and infant feeding, development, and more
  • Connecting women to resources and programs to access food, employment, housing, child care, and other support as needed
  • Helping coordinate medical care and other services such as father engagement and support, home visiting nurses, WIC nutritional support, and more
  • ​Supporting families to advocate for their needs

Join us to reduce racial inequities in infant mortality and poor birth outcomes in Boston.

Community Action Network

BHSI Sites

Site Name Phone Number
Boston Medical Center - Teen and Tot Program
(617) 414-4528
Bowdoin Street Health Center (617) 754-0101
Codman Square Health Center (617) 822-8387
Healthy Baby / Healthy Child Program (617) 534-5832
Mattapan Community Health Center (617) 898-9063

Whittier Street Health Center

(617) 989-3024

(617) 989-3070
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