Family and early parenting support

Being a parent can be an exciting and rewarding experience, creating a safe and nurturing environment for your children can be a challenge. A range of parenting advice and support services are available to help parents in their important role.

Family and parenting supports include:

  • Early Parenting Centres
  • Child FIRST and Family Services
  • Cradle to Kinder program.

These supports are provided by community-based organisations throughout Victoria and funded by the Department of Health & Human Services.

For more information or to apply for a service contact the Child and family services information, referral and support team (Child FIRST) in your local area.

Early parenting services

Early parenting services aim to provide support to parents from pregnancy to when their child is four years old.  A range of specialist support, counselling, education and advice services are provided.

Child FIRST and family services

Child FIRST and family services aim to promote the safety, stability and development of vulnerable children, young people and their families, from birth to 17 years of age, by providing case work service and linking families with relevant support services.

A referral to Child FIRST can be made where there is concern for the wellbeing of a child, young person (0–17 years, including an unborn child) or their family.

Refer to Child FIRST or make an enquiry

Child FIRST (Child and Family Information, Referral and Support Teams) are the entry point into family services or other support services for vulnerable children and families. Child FIRST teams are located in 23 sites across Victoria.

The Family Services program (including Child FIRST) is available throughout the state and is delivered by a range of services in your local area.

Cradle to Kinder program

The Cradle to Kinder program is an intensive ante- and post-natal support service. Cradle to Kinder provides longer-term, intensive family and early parenting support for vulnerable young mums aged up to 25 years of age and their families, beginning in pregnancy and until their child reaches four years of age.

Further information about the program, including the locations of the programs, is available in the
Cradle to Kinder information sheet.

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