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Hubs get families off to good start


7 December 2012

Hubs get families off to good start

The South Dunedin Early Years Hub features prominently in a new book released by the Ministry of Social Development.

Helping Families in the Early Years – Stories from the hubs tells the stories of 13 hubs throughout New Zealand and how they bring together services and support for the families of young children.

Hubs are all about making it easy for families to get the support they need to get their children off to a good start in life. They make it easier for families to access services such as ante-natal care; home visit programmes; and parenting information, education and support.

Bringing services together in one place which makes it easy for families to get help on a number of fronts. Hubs bypass the hassle of seeking out multiple services and visiting them with a young child or children.

Research shows that when families with complex and multiple needs get a more holistic approach, the results of individual interventions or services are more likely to be successful. Good work done with a family isn’t undermined by a gap in another service, for example complementing good health care with advice on healthy eating and practical gardening and cooking skills, or supporting parents’ literacy so they can be involved in teaching their children to read.

Hubs offer a way for government services to work alongside community based services which gets more value from existing services, uses local strengths and resources, and builds stronger supportive communities – the kind of places we want our children to grow up.

In Dunedin, the Hub is a service provided by the Methodist Mission. It offers a range of services for families and their children - Pre Birth and Breastfeeding Support, Playgroups, B4 School Checks, Family Planning, Parenting courses, Music and Movement (toddlers and mums!), Budget Advice – all held in their welcoming new premises at 158 Oxford Street (the former Forbury School).

The Hub has announced activities for next year including free cooking courses, each of which will run for five weeks in the well-equipped new community kitchen. Contact Christine or Miriam to find out more; phone 466 3407.

Read all the stories at www.familyservices.govt.nz

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