Connected Beginnings

Connected Beginnings is an element of the Community Child Care Fund under the Commonwealth Government’s Jobs for Families - Child Care Package. From July 2016, $20 million over two years is available for the program to support the integration of early childhood, maternal and child health, and family support services with schools in a selected number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities experiencing disadvantage so that children are well prepared for school.

The aim of Connected Beginnings is to ensure that Indigenous children in identified areas of high need achieve the learning and development outcomes necessary for a positive transition to school. Over time this will contribute to a reduction in the disparity in school readiness and educational outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children.

Funding for the Connected Beginnings program includes initiatives that will:

  • provide outreach and support so that more Indigenous families get involved in early childhood services
  • bring early childhood and health services together so Indigenous families have a combined place in their community for these services
  • improve sharing of information making it easier for families to tell their story once.

Where will Connected Beginnings be delivered?

The program will be available to select communities in Australia. The department will invite one organisation in each approved location to lead the implementation of integration activities in that location. Please refer to the Connected Beginnings Program Guidelines for further information on the delivery of the program.

As locations are approved details will be available on this web page.

Consultations together with a range of other important information, such as Australian Early Development Census data, were used to identify communities of high need and levels of vulnerability.

Who will Connected Beginnings help?

•Indigenous children from birth to starting school age; and

•Indigenous pregnant women, mothers and families with Indigenous children up to starting school age.

While Connected Beginnings is about improving outcomes for Indigenous children, non-Indigenous families may also benefit where they access the services in the selected locations.

When will Connected Beginnings start?

Connected Beginnings integration initiatives are expected to rollout progressively from July 2016 in selected communities.

Where can I get more information?