Release type: Media Release

Date:

Early childhood learning program in more homes

Ministers:

The Hon Kate Ellis MP
Minister for Employment Participation
Minister for Child Care

Media release also with the Hon Mark Butler MP, Member for Port Adelaide.

Australian families from another 15 communities will benefit from the expansion of an innovative program that helps parents prepare children for a successful start at school.

The Minister for Employment Participation and Child Care, Kate Ellis, and the Member for Wakefield, Nick Champion, today announced the expansion of $32.5 million Home Interaction Program for Parents and Youngsters (HIPPY).

Speaking at a community centre in South Australia’s Mansfield Park, one of 35 communities currently benefitting from the program, Ms Ellis and Mr Champion also announced the partner organisations that will deliver HIPPY in the new locations.

“All children deserve the best possible start to their education, and the expansion of this program will help more parents and carers provide this for their children,” Ms Ellis said.

“HIPPY empowers parents and carers to be their child’s first teacher, giving them educational resources and home tutors to help up to 3000 families prepare their children for school.

“The program will be expanded to a further five locations in New South Wales, four in Victoria, three in Queensland, two in South Australia and one in Western Australia in 2011.

“The addition of another 15 locations for this program delivers on the Government’s election commitment to take the home-based parenting and early childhood enrichment program to 50 communities across Australia.”

“Two of the new HIPPY locations announced today will be delivered in my electorate, and I am delighted that families in Wakefield will benefit from this program,” Mr Champion said.

“HIPPY will also offer some parents and carers a supported pathway to employment and local community leadership in Wakefield.”

The Member for Port Adelaide, Mark Butler, also welcomed the announcement.

“Families in the program at Mansfield Park Community Centre have already received great benefits from HIPPY, and I have no doubt that communities at the new locations will benefit from the same success,” Mr Butler said.

“The partner organisations announced already have a great record in supporting families in need, and I am delighted that they are partnering with the Government to deliver this program.”

HIPPY currently operates in 35 locations across Australia, including eight in New South Wales, eight in Victoria, five in Queensland, three in South Australia, two in Western Australia, six in Tasmania, two in the Northern Territory and one in the Australian Capital Territory.

Locations are selected in areas of disadvantage with a high proportion of families with young children.

Partner organisations will work with HIPPY Australia, a program run by the Brotherhood of St Laurence. Details of the new locations and partner organisations are attached.

Further information is available at www.hippyaustralia.org.au.

State Locations New partner organisation and/or provider of the program
NSW Ashmont Anglicare
NSW Fairfield (catchment extending to East Fairfield and Villawood) Uniting Care Burnside
NSW Nowra Nowra Family Support Services
NSW Riverwood Learning Links
NSW West Tamworth Tamworth Family Support Services
VIC Broadmeadows/Dallas Brotherhood of St Laurence
VIC Dandenong South Eastern Region Migrant Resource Centre
VIC Frankston North Brotherhood of St Laurence
VIC Robinvale Robinvale District Health Service
QLD Caboolture Australian Red Cross Society
QLD Manoora Playgroup QLD
QLD West Ipswich (catchment includes Leichhardt and One Mile) Australian Red Cross Society
SA Davoren Park Novita Children's Services
SA Salisbury North Novita Children's Services
WA East Geraldton (catchment includes Rangeway, Karloo and Utakarra) Child Australia