Early Childhood Intervention Program

The Early Connections – Coffs Coast  Program provides support, education and therapy for families with children (zero to six years), with a diagnosis or developmental delay, living in the Coffs Harbour and Bellingen Shires. To ensure the best outcomes for families and children, we use the Key Worker model which offers a family-centred approach. This means staff work alongside family members and other professionals to provide flexible supports that meet the individual child’s needs. We focus on supporting the child in their natural environment and in their everyday experiences and activities. Supports provided through the Program are evidence-based, focusing on developing skills. Supports may be offered at the Centre or at other locations depending on the family’s needs. Our team of highly trained professionals are available to work with families, and to plan an individual program which is monitored and assessed at regular intervals.

Click Here to download a copy of our Family Handbook for 2017.

Early Childhood Intervention Program Overview

Early Connections – Coffs Coast  provides the following Early Childhood Intervention education and therapy supports:

  • Information and support that addresses the individual needs of the child and family;
  • Play-based education and therapy programs based on the Family Plan (FP) and Individual Educational Plan (IEP) of the individual child;
  • Transition support for children and their families to the next educational setting, including the school setting;
  • Facilitated family support groups;
  • Linking families to services and providing access and co-ordination of services;
  • Collaboration with local early childhood education and care services, other child and family services and the
    broader community to improve access and participation of children with disabilities / developmental delays;
  • Culturally-responsive and inclusive program to facilitate access to services;

Early Connections – Coffs Coast  provides education, training and workshops for:

  • Families
  • Early childhood education and care services
  • Other child and family services
  • The broader community

The Key Worker Model

The Key Worker Model is recommended as best practice support for children receiving Early Child Early Intervention. At Early Connections – Coffs Coast  each child and family will be allocated your own Key Worker who will:

  • Assist you in developing goals specific to your child;
  • Is the primary contact between you and our transdisciplinary team of professionals;
  • Is the primary contact between our transdisciplinary team and all existing services supporting your family;
  • Shares information about your child’s development, success and achievements with other team members;
  • Supports you to implement the recommendations made by the team into your family’s existing daily routine, your home environment, and other places significant to your child, eg. the local playground;
  • Offers you a flexible and responsive service that makes sure the help you get changes with your child’s changing needs
  • Works very closely with you, your child and any other important people in your child’s life;

Early Connections - Coffs Coast Transdisciplinary Team

The Early Connections – Coffs Coast team works directly with families using a Transdisciplinary approach to early childhood early intervention. This approach is recommended as best practice by the National Disability Insurance Authority (NDIA) and Early Childhood Intervention Australia (ECIA) and is how our organisation has worked for the last decade with families and children.

Early Connections – Coffs Coast employs professionals who are highly qualified and experienced including therapists and teachers from a range of backgrounds including occupational therapists, speech therapists, paediatric physiotherapist, family workers and special education trained teachers and educators.

The Transdisciplinary model is recognised as being particularly beneficial for Early Childhood Early Intervention Programs due to the diversity within the team and the range of disciplines who share their knowledge and experience when working with children. One team member works directly with a family. We call this role the Key Worker.

Early Childhood Intervention Australia has recently released an Early Childhood Intervention Best Practice discussion paper which details the benefits and positive outcomes achieved for families and children when using the Transdisciplinary model.