Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Santa Monica) has been honored by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the Nurse-Family Partnership as a champion of home visitation in support of children.

The two entities presented Waxman with a leadership award during a private ceremony Aug. 31 at his district office in Los Angeles. Nurse-Family Partnership is a leading non-profit organization addressing the needs of low income, first-time parents and their children.

Waxman, who represents communities such as Santa Monica, is one of several members of Congress being recognized for their leadership, contributions and dedication to improving the lives of children by championing and enacting the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visitation Program. The federal program provides $1.5 billion in funding over five years for states to implement or expand evidence-based home visitation programs.

“Rep. Waxman’s distinguished career has been guided by his commitment and dedication to improving the lives of children and families,” said Thomas R. Jenkins, Jr., NFP president and chief executive officer. “We are proud to recognize his tireless work, particularly his efforts to bring home visitation to many more vulnerable families in California and across the country by supporting enactment of this legislation to provide federal funding for proven home visitation programs.”

Jenkins added, “By some estimates, California may gain $7.8 million this year because of this new legislation. Rep. Waxman’s work will translate to greater potential for many families through expanded, life-transforming home visitation assistance.”

In California, Nurse-Family Partnership has served more than 8,400 families in 11 counties since its inception in the state in 1998. To date, the program of nurse home visits to first-time mothers living in poverty has been funded in California through an array of sources.

Today, Nurse-Family Partnership serves more than 22,000 families in 32 U.S. states through a program of ongoing nurse home visitation. It is estimated that every year there are approximately 600,000 eligible first-time mothers in the U.S. that would benefit from the program, according to the organization.