Previous Programs

Early Matters Shepparton

Relationships Australia Victoria provided the Early Matters program which included the Evidence Based Exploring Together a group-based program for families with pre-school aged children, and Tuning Into Kids parenting program to help prevent behavioural issues in young children. It also included a wraparound family support model to support vulnerable children and their families. This activity was delivered in GoodStart Early Learning Centre. This program concluded 30 June 2017. The Digital Story of the Early Matters Shepparton has been produced by Liz Arcus Photography and can be viewed here.

Real Men Make Great Dads Program

FamilyCare provided education and emotional support to help fathers manage their parenting role effectively. Participating fathers gained skills, knowledge and understanding about stages of child development, increased parenting capacities and appropriate discipline strategies throughout their child’s development. The program also offered sessions at some Primary Schools to support fathers living in Greater Shepparton with children aged 0-12 years. This program concluded on 30 June 2013.

iPads-iKids-iCommunity-iSchool Program

Implemented at Gowrie Street Primary School. The school was supported to purchase 50 iPads (including protection cases and screen protectors) as an engagement tool for learning.  The program gave students and their families the opportunity to use current technology for the provision of educational support and learning opportunities ‘anywhere at any time’. There was a combination of learning activities in the classroom as well as parent and child learning sessions. This program concluded on 30 June 2013.

Intensive Supported Playscheme Greater Shepparton

Save the Children provided an intensive supported Playscheme in Tatura and employed a Family Support Worker to support families attending Save the Children’s Mobile Playschemes across the Shepparton region. This program concluded 30 June 2013.

Neighbourhood Schools Network – Playgroups in Schools Program

The program connected with families and children in the early years before their formal schooling years. It gave the children experiences in formal learning settings, use of learning materials and opportunities for learning through play. The program operated at Gowrie Street Primary School, Wilmot Road Primary School and St Georges Road Primary School. This program concluded 30 June 2013.

Greater Shepparton Mother Goose Model and Program

The Mother Goose program provided a group experience for parents, their babies and young children that focused on the pleasure and power of using rhymes, songs and stories together. Through this program 22 new Mother Goose facilitators from a range of local agencies were trained to run the program across Greater Shepparton and they were supported by a Mother Goose co-ordinator. The program was run by Greater Shepparton City Council. This program concluded 30 June 2013.

Tatura Early Years Project

Provided by Greater Shepparton City Council, this initiative has been designed to improve Maternal & Child Health (MCH) and kindergarten engagement with vulnerable families and children in Tatura by increasing the outreach role of MCH services and implementing innovative strategies in kindergartens to encourage access and participation. For the MCH component this included more home visits and increased liaison with families within supported playgroups, childcare and kindergarten settings. A second component was the provision of individual, breastfeeding education sessions pre birth and breastfeeding support home visits during those first few weeks to support the establishment of breastfeeding.  In addition a “Preparing for Parenthood” program adopted an ‘active engagement’ approach to make contact with young women who were pregnant and experiencing some aspects of vulnerability.  Strengthening linkages between local service providers was also encouraged through the establishment of a Tatura Early Years Network. This program concluded 30 June 2013.

The Kinship Program for Aboriginal Fathers & Foundations to Employment Program for Long Term Unemployed

Moloka Pty Ltd  provided Indigenous fathers with information, skills and understanding about their own well-being which can have positive influences for their relationships with their children, partner and/or ex-partner.   The Foundations to Employment Program was designed to provide long term jobless Indigenous families opportunities to participate in discussions, group workshops and information sharing  regarding the impact of being ‘jobless’ on themselves and their family. The program was also to explore positive and negative influences they have been experienced when employed or seeking employment and included individual actions and activities that could lead to long term and meaningful employment. This program concluded May 2013.

Future Parenting Program

Provided by The Bridge Youth Service is a program that supports the development of parenting skills of young parents, ensuring the health and wellbeing of the child. The Future Parenting Program also supports young parents in meeting the requirements of their Centrelink Participation Plan through engaging in parenting skills development programs and with school or education options. The Digital Story of the Future Parenting program has been produced by Liz Arcus Photograph and can be viewed here.

Stronger Connections – A Family Resource and Mentoring Program

Run by Uniting Care Cutting Edge this program focused on refugee fathers and their families. Fathers were assisted to find their identity, embrace and develop their fathering role, and promote familial reconnection to overcome issues and conflicts that are typically evident through ‘refugee journeys’. The program offered family activities, parent support, education and information sessions and mentoring programs. This program concluded 30 June 2014. The Digital Story of the Stronger Connections program has been produced by Liz Arcus Photography and can be viewed here.

Early Learning Hubs (formerly Young Dads are Great Dads)

Relationships Australia Victoria enhanced the capacity of parents and carers to support their children through transitions to kinder and school, by addressing health and wellbeing issues, supporting language and literacy development, and meeting priority needs. Targeted professional development opportunities were provided for childcare and kinder staff to assist them in supporting the needs of vulnerable children and families. A peer support network for Grandparents and kinship carers to support children in their care was also enhanced. This program concluded 30 June 2014. The Digital Story of the Early Learning Hubs program, produced by Liz Arcus Photography can be viewed here.

Community Hub: A Community Learning Together Program

Implemented at Bourchier Street Primary School the program supported the employment of an Early Childhood Worker to run playgroups and reading sessions in the school library and work in the junior classes doing Read To’s with small groups of children.   A  Community Worker was also employed to establish the “Paddock to Plate” program which involved growing, harvesting, preparing and sharing food from the school garden. The program also supported adult learning and development opportunities for parents with skills and insights to pursue employment opportunities. This program concluded 30 June 2014. The Digital Story of the Paddock to Plate program at Bourchier Street Primary School, Shepparton, produced by Liz Arcus Photography can be viewed here.

Shepparton Neighbourhood School Hubs Stage 2

This project involved collaborative and committed engagement across each of the school communities of St Georges Road Primary School, Wilmot Road Primary School and Gowrie Street Primary School, whereby each school delivered specialised early years (0-5 year olds) and parent education programs to support vulnerable, CALD and Indigenous children and families; it was facilitated by skilled Neighbourhood School Coordinators and specialised family engagement officers. This program concluded 30 June 2014. The Digital Story of the Neighbourhood School Hubs program, produced by Liz Arcus Photography can be viewed here.

Bringing your Baby Home

Provided by CatholicCare Melbourne in partnership with The Bridge Youth Service. The program funded the training of local facilitators to support young parents from Sudanese, South Sudanese, Afghani, Iraqi and Congolese, backgrounds to care for their children before and after birth and through the early years. The program trained local facilitators from The Bridge Youth Service to conduct the Bringing Your Baby Home Program for young parents aged 14–19. The program provided an opportunity for expectant parents to discuss topics such as communication, moving into parenthood, managing tough times and balancing everyone’s needs. This program concluded 30 June 2014.

Wrap Around Health and Wellbeing – Extended School Hubs (Stage 2)

Located at Gowrie Street Primary School, the project aimed to build the capacity of parents and carers to support their children in their health and wellbeing, specifically by addressing speech and language issues.   Activities were developed which specifically supported parents to build their knowledge and capacity around speech and language and partners provided some of this service directly.  A worker dedicated to engaging with and supporting parents was employed and worked as part of a multi-disciplinary team within the school hub setting. This program concluded 30 June 2014.

Mooroopna School Community Hub

With Mooroopna Primary School as the lead, the Project aimed to build family/individual resources and capabilities to overcome social exclusion and unemployment. A Community Development Worker was employed to drive and co-ordinate this project as well as leading community consultations, identifying needs within the target group and area, and co-ordinating partner activities, including leading some of those activities.  The CD Worker engaged with parents/carers in school communities and assisted them to participate in both non accredited and accredited training to increase life skills, confidence, employability skills and appreciation of education and training, using existing school and community resources. This program concluded 30 June 2014.

Tatura Early Years Project

This project was led by  Save the Children and built on the current work of two existing CFC projects, namely the Tatura Early Years Project and the SCF Mobile Playgroup and Intensive Family Support Initiative. It has five key components for the Tatura community:

  • The continuation of the Tatura Early Years Network
  • Advocacy and community capacity building – primarily in relation to access to antenatal and medical care in the
  • Tatura community
  • Maternal and Child Health outreach visiting
  • A weekly Mobile Playgroup – currently at the Tatura Caravan Park
  • Family Support offered to families affiliated with the Playgroup

The Project aimed to improve the engagement and participation of vulnerable families and children in early childhood health and education services. This program concluded on 30 June 2014. The Digital Story of the Supported Play scheme  program, produced by Liz Arcus Photography can be viewed here.