Best Start – Wellington Shire
What is Best Start?
Best Start is a Victorian government early years initiative. It supports families, caregivers and communities to provide the best possible environment, experiences and care for young children in the important years from pregnancy to school.
Best Start aims to improve the health, development, learning and wellbeing of all Victorian children (0-8 years). It supports communities, parents and service providers to improve universal early year’s services so they are responsive to local needs. It has a strong emphasis on prevention and early intervention.
These improvements are expected to result in:
- better access to child and family support, health services and early education
- improvements in parents’ capacity, confidence and enjoyment of family life
- communities that are more child and family friendly.
There are 30 Best Start project sites across the state. Six of these sites focus specifically on working with Aboriginal communities. Local partnerships are the cornerstone of each project site.
Best Start approach:
The Best Start approach is to strengthen the local capacity of parents, families and communities and early years services to better provide for the needs of all young children and their families.
This is achieved by:
- listening to parent and family knowledge and expectations
- the inclusion of vulnerable children and families in early years services
- the inclusion of Aboriginal children and their families
- ensuring services are inclusive of culturally diverse children and families
- mobilising community interest, resources and infrastructure to create child-friendly communities
- translating early childhood evidence into practice
- coordinating and integrating existing services
- introducing innovative changes to services, based on evidence
- developing strong cross-sectoral local partnerships.
Wellington Best Start aims to:
- Increase the number of women who choose to breastfeed, and are successful in exclusively breastfeeding their baby until 6 months of age and beyond.
- Children who commence primary school education, have previously attended a quality funded kindergarten program.
- To increase the support for parents to participate in community life.
Wellington Best Start plans to do this by working in partnership with Wellington Shire Council, Community and Health Services, Early Years Providers, Kindergarten and Primary School, local businesses and most importantly parents, carers and children to achieve the strategies.
How to get involved with Wellington Best Start:
- Join a local Best Start workgroup that is working on the project aims.
- Ask the Best Start Facilitator to speak to your group or organisation about the Wellington Best Start Project.
- Inform the Best Start Partnership about local initiatives and events.
- Contact the Best Start Facilitator with your concerns regarding support to families with young children.
Contact Us:Belinda Jones Wellington Best Start Best Start Community Facilitator Ph: 51 44 7777 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information please visit:
http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/ – Better Health Channel Website
http://www.rch.org.au/kidsinfo/ – Royal Children Hospital Melbourne Website
http://raisingchildren.net.au/ – Raising Children Network Website
http://www.education.vic.gov.au/Pages/default.aspx – Department of Education and Early Childhood Development
https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/ – Australian breastfeeding Association Website