This year we’ve already had two Outreach Days that were held on the 7th Feb & 28th April this year with more to come. We had a variety of organisations join us who were friendly and great with the children. We’ve been grateful to work closely with like-minded people, and it is their willingness and commitment to engage with community that makes a real difference to what we’re trying to achieve.
Thank you for your continued support.
- Totally Smiles
- HA-PEE Hearing Australia
- Optometrist Brien Holden Foundation
- Closing the Gap
- Luke Priddis Foundation
- Donna Jory – Aboriginal Health Worker
- Penrith LGA – provided transport
- Building Strong Foundations
For Aboriginal Developmental Day, NCNS Child Development workers (Amy and Zoe) coordinate the services and help everything run seamlessly. Amy and Zoe put a lot of thought into making it a safe non-threatening environment by planning engaging activities and making it a fun experience for the kids. We also have Belinda from our Close the Gap program come along and share about healthy eating and what the 715 initiative is. There are plenty of activities running throughout the day, including a craft table organised by Donna Jory with rocks for some eager artists to draw on. Luke Priddis Foundation contributed with some awesome raffle give a ways and take home Lego sets. All of the fun helps distract the kids from the most important part of the day which is getting their check-up. We really want to see children thriving in school, and it can be difficult for non-professionals to detect when a child’s health is impacting their day-to-day life. Children may not be able to communicate their difficulties or even recognise when they need help. The activities play an important part in making it easier for optical, dental, and hearing checks to be performed.
WHY IS DEVELOPMENTAL DAY IMPORTANT?
This outreach is important to our team and community because there is still a significant gap between the health status of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, and Aboriginal kids have some of the highest levels of preventable diseases in the world. With Totally Smiles (dental), HA-PEE hearing and Brien Holden Foundation (optical) providing health checks for the children, it is possible to screen for any concerns and provide medical intervention, as well as advice and support to the family. Screening is primarily for Aboriginal children aged 0-6 years old so that any concerns can be addressed before starting Kindergarten. By getting in early we can help give Aboriginal children equal opportunity when they start school. Overall the outreach offers Aboriginal families easier access to healthcare services and a creative solution for pre-school children to receive regular check-ups. We hope to encourage future community engagement with local healthcare services and improve the health of Aboriginal children in the Penrith Region.