‘One size fits all does not always fit the rural and regional Australia’
Contact Incorporated (Contact Inc.), the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association (ICPA Aust) and Mobile Children’s Services Association of NSW (MCSA) call upon the Australian Government to recognise the impacts of the proposed Jobs For Families Child Care Package for early education and care access in rural and regional Australia and commit to find ways to sustain current models of early childhood care that are effectively and efficiently reaching rural and remote children and families.
ICPA Aust, Contact Inc. and MCSA support the Government’s efforts to improve and open up the Budget Based Funding programme to provide opportunities for growth and refinement and to make for a more affordable, more flexible and more accessible streamlined child care system. However, unitedly the three organisations are concerned that streamlining of Child Care funding - a one size fits all – may render many of the current Australian Government Budget Based Funded (BBF) Mobiles unavailable and the likely impact is that the early education and care of isolated children and their families will suffer.
Wendy Hick, Federal ICPA President, highlighted that “BBF Mobile Children’s Services provide high quality early education and care services that are deeply valued by ICPA Members, are supporting families to continue to live in regional Australia and are essential in reaching isolated and rural and remote communities that would otherwise miss out on access to early education and care”.
MCSA President, Ms Fisicaro, supported this view and said “our BBF Mobile Children’s Services visit communities and deliver early learning and care services including child care and play session programmes where centre-based children’s services are not otherwise readily available”.
“Many of the children, families and communities that the BBF Mobile Children’s Services visit can be quite marginalised and isolated. A commitment from the Australian Government to find ways to continue to fund the various models of early education and care delivered through Mobile Children’s Services is essential in ensuring their future” commented Sue Kingwill, Contact Inc. CEO.
Unitedly Contact Inc., ICPA Aust and MCSA call for amendments to the Jobs For Families Child Care Package and any resulting guidelines as a one size fits all approach would compromise many rural and remote families continued affordable access to early education and care currently delivered through the BBF Mobile children’s services.
Sue Kingwill Contact CEO 0458 925 144
Wendy Hick Federal ICPA President (07) 4995 3266