What is an early childhood partner?

Early childhood partners are local organisations we fund to deliver the early childhood approach. Our early childhood partners have teams of professionals with experience and clinical expertise in working with young children with developmental delay or disability and their families. We chose them as partners for their specialist skills in early childhood intervention. They focus on delivering family-centred supports using a best-practice model.

You’ll find them in most communities around Australia. If an early childhood partner is not in your area, we will support you to connect with alternative options depending on where you live.

Easy Read information is available:

It explains how to connect and work with an early childhood partner. It also includes details of how you can access The Telephone Interpreting Service, Teletypewriter (TTY) options and The National Relay Service.

Find an early childhood partner , or for further information use the contact us  page or call 1800 800 110.

What do the early childhood partners do?

Early childhood partners can:

  • connect you to your local mainstream and community services such as community or child health service, playgroups, childcare, parent support groups, education options and recreation
  • give you practical information about child development
  • use observations and information from any screening tools, assessments, or reports to understand the impact of your child’s delay or disability – but they don’t complete assessments for diagnosis
  • identify if your child is likely to benefit from early support and, where appropriate, provide a short period of early supports to help you and your child to work towards goals
  • support you to apply to the NDIS, if you decide to apply on your child’s behalf, including support to put together information and evidence to help work out if your child is eligible
  • help you connect with best practice early childhood intervention service providers
  • monitor your child’s progress and support them to transition from the early childhood approach.

Early childhood partners also work to build the capacity of community and mainstream services such as childcare, to increase their awareness and ability to support children with developmental delay and disability. They focus on this because early childhood education and the opportunity to interact with other children is a critical factor in child development and wellbeing. 

What happens if there are no early childhood partners in your area?

Early childhood partners are not located in remote and very remote areas.

If you live in an area that doesn’t have an early childhood partner, and you have concerns about your child’s development or disability you should first speak with your doctor, child health nurse, early childhood educator or other health professional.

You can also contact us for further information.

This page current as of
15 November 2023
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