Early Childhood Support
Each child will take a unique path in their learning and development and will require different levels of support. In Victoria, all families have access to a range of services that work with families to support children’s learning and development including:
- Maternal Child Health
- Child care
There are also targeted and intensive services which provide learning and development support for children and families with additional needs. These include:
- Child and family support services such as early childhood intervention
- Supported playgroups
- Early start kindergarten
- A range of community, primary and specialist health services
Do you have some concerns about your child’s development?
If you are concerned about your child’s development and would like some guidance in accessing supports, you can start by talking to your Maternal and Child Health Nurse, local doctor or health service. You can get information about these services from your local council and the Victorian Department of Education and Training website.
In Victoria the Maternal Child Health Service is free and is available to support your child’s health and development from birth until school age.
Qualified Maternal and Child Health Nurses are also available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week via the Maternal Child Health Line
Phone 13 22 29
Do you identify as an ATSI family?
If you identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander you might like to look at the Rock Solid Resources. This information is for everyone – for Elders, for parents and carers, for young people themselves, and for everyone involved in caring for Aboriginal children.
Do you identify as Culturally Diverse?
Maternal Child Health Nurses are available to assist all families in their local area and can provide translated material and interpreting services for families.
You may also benefit from some of the resources put together by Positive Partnerships. These resources relate to children with Autism and their families.
Children with disabilities and developmental delays
All of us learn throughout life and it starts from the day we are born. National and international research recognises that the early years of life are the most important for learning and development. This is when the foundations for the future are laid, when experiences and opportunities support a child’s learning and engagement in family and community life through childhood, teenage tears and ultimately adulthood.
Children who have a disability and/or developmental delay may need some additional and specialised support, particularly in these important early years, to assist them to play and engage in the many learning and development opportunities in their world.
This specialised support is often identified under the NDIS as Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI).
To read more about Early Childhood Early Intervention click here.
To read more about where to start if you have concerns for your child click here.