Early Parenting Centres provide help and support for families with children 0 to 3 years who have difficulties adjusting to, or establishing, feeding and other early childhood routines. Families can stay at the centres or attend a day stay program.
Early Parenting Centres provide help and support for families who have difficulties with children aged 0 to 36 months. These difficulties might be establishing feeding or sleeping routines. Families either stay at Early Parenting Centres for about two to five days or attend a day program. Some centres offer home visits and a telephone advice service.
Help for parents
Early Parenting Centres offer help to families who have problems with:
- Settling an infant and getting them to sleep
- Breast or bottle feeding an infant
- Children with behavioural problems
- Children who need special care because of illness or a disability.
Early Parenting Centres also help with:
- Parent-child relationships
- Maternal well-being.
Increasing parents’ confidence
Early Parenting Centres aim to increase confidence in parenting. The services they offer include:
- Information and advice
- Education programs
- Skill development
- Help and support.
Parents also have the option to attend a day-stay program which:
- Offers a minimum of four hours intensive support per day
- May be helpful for parents who have difficulties with infant feeding and settling
Where to find an Early Parenting Centre
The three Early Parenting Centres in Melbourne are the:
- O’Connell Family Centre in Canterbury Tel. (03) 8416 7600
- Queen Elizabeth Centre in Noble Park Tel. (03) 9549 2777
- Tweddle Child and Family Health Service in Footscray. Tel. (03) 9689 1577
Where to get help
- Your maternal and child health nurse
- Your local doctor
- Family support services
- Australian Breastfeeding Association
- New mothers' groups or other support groups
- Your local community health centre
- Family Relationship Advice Line Tel. 1800 050 321 Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm, Saturday, 10am to 4pm
- Contact the centres directly.
Things to remember
- The centres are registered public hospitals
- They are available to families across Victoria
- You can be admitted under Medicare as a private patient
- Older children may be allowed to stay with you too
- Ask your maternal and child health nurse about the support services available in your area.
This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by:
Department of Education and Early Childhood Development
Page content currently being reviewed.
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