Families with young children are well catered for by the early childhood services provided by Gippsland Lakes Community Health (GLCH) in Bairnsdale and Lakes Entrance.
Beginning at birth, GLCH’s maternal and child health (MCH) nurses provide parents of children aged 0-6 with health and development advice and information; and also offer an ‘Enhanced’ Maternal and Child Health Service to families who require additional or specialist support.
“GLCH is passionate about providing high-quality, client-focused early childhood and parent support services,” said Sue Medson OAM, Chief Executive Officer. “And we’ve been operating since 1975, so are proud to be a leading source of information and support for parents and families in the region.”
As a registered service provider under the National Disabilities Insurance Scheme (NDIS), GLCH provide a range of parenting groups, early childhood intervention services, and therapy programs to eligible children and their families.
“Starting intervention early is the best way to support the development and wellbeing of children with a disability or developmental delay,” explained Ms Medson. “The supports and services GLCH offers under the NDIS can help children develop the skills they need to participate in everyday activities.”
Services and supports include physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech pathology. GLCH also offer a variety of therapy groups for children who need help with language and motor skills. These groups also provide an opportunity for children to develop social skills, such as engaging in conversations, following instructions and interacting with other children of their own age group.
GLCH’s Children’s Centre in Lakes Entrance provides high-quality and affordable care and education programs, that promote a sense of emotional wellbeing and social and cultural awareness for children. The Children’s Centre offers full-time, part-time and casual child care with places available for children aged 6 weeks to 12 years, including children with special needs. The Centre also offers vacation care, as well as a four-year-old kinder program which operates five days a week, including one day of Coastal Kinder, which is an off-site experience where children get to interact with nature and learn about their local coastal environment.
At its Bairnsdale location, GLCH also offers support programs for parents, including a ‘New Parent’s Group’ – providing first-time parents with information to assist with the healthy nurturing of their baby; ‘FAB Tuesdays’ – an eight-week group for women who suffer from mild to moderate anxiety or depression, delivered in partnership with a peri-natal emotional health practitioner; ‘Bumps to Bubs’ – a weekly social group that also provides information and advice about parenting and child development; and ‘Tunning into Kids’ – a parenting program that focuses on the connection between parents and kids.
To find out more about these and GLCH’s other early childhood services and programs, visit one of their five service locations in Bairnsdale, Bruthen, Metung, Lakes Entrance, and Nowa Nowa, find them on Facebook or go to www.glch.org.au.