Connecting Community through the AEDI

An initiative of the Midland Early Years Action Group
MEYAG encourages partnerships between various
agencies and community members to promote
positive development and well-being of children
aged 0 to 8 years in the Midland area.
Formed in 2003 and coordinated by the City of Swan.
MEYAG consists of community groups and agencies, not-for-profit
agencies, local and state government agencies including schools, and a
local parliamentary member.
MEYAG currently has over 30 members who actively participate in monthly
meetings or MEYAG working groups.
The Australian Government has provided funding of $2.6 million to
implement the AEDI ‘Local Champions’ Program.
WA received $525K to enable ‘champions’ to work directly with WA
communities to respond to their AEDI results.
‘Local Champions’ have been selected through an EOI process and will
work with communities that demonstrate high proportions of
vulnerability as revealed by the 2009-2011 AEDI results.
Midvale Early Childhood and Parenting Centre (MECPC) applied
on behalf of the MEYAG and were selected to develop a locallevel project.
Connecting Community through the AEDI connects ‘Local
Champions’ with the community to promote awareness and
understanding of the AEDI.
It identifies and employs appropriate methods to disseminate the
2009-2011 AEDI results within target communities allowing it to
become a catalyst for action towards improving the early
developmental outcomes of children.
A project of Midvale Early Childhood and Parenting Centre, the City of
Swan, Shire of Mundaring and the Midland Early Years Action Group.
The Foothills Information Referral Service, also funded under ‘Local
Champions’, has united with this collaboration in aim of strengthening
the implementation of the ‘Local Champions’ Program across
neighbouring regions.
Child & Adolescent Community Health - Inland Health Promotion has
contributed to the development of the project’s resources and will carry
out the project’s evaluation.
Swan community
Herne Hill
Koongamia Lockridge
Mundaring community
Swan View
Kalamunda community
Gooseberry Hill
High Wycombe
Maida Vale
Wattle Grove
Over a quarter of children living in Swan and Kalamunda
communities are developmentally vulnerable on one or more
More than half (56.5%) of children in Midvale are developmentally
vulnerable on one or more domains.
More than one fifth of children in Bellevue, Forrestfield, Herne Hill,
Koongamia, Lockridge, Midland, Midvale and Stratton are
developmentally vulnerable on two or more domains.
These figures are significantly higher than State and National figures.
Since pilot AEDI studies in 2004 and 2006, MEYAG have used the
AEDI data to identify it’s priority areas, focussing on the domains of
vulnerability as well as celebrating the domains where children are
doing well.
Connecting Community through the AEDI sees the AEDI data being
presented to the wider community.
Six MEYAG members have been identified and trained as ‘Local
Champions’ and will help disseminate the AEDI information and
results to the community.
Connecting Community through the AEDI will support agencies,
schools and parents to understand the concepts of;
Early brain development
Ecological model of child development and;
For parents and carers: It will help to facilitate the conversation
around healthy early childhood development.
For agencies and schools: It will provide a platform for change and
will inform decision making.
Our AEDI brain boxes contain;
3 model brains
Resource folder
Talk Read Sing Play tip sheet
CD-rom of resources
Early development slides
Distributed to 35 different groups including;
Department for Communities
Child Health and Child Development
Family Centres
Polytechnic West
Family Day Care & Inclusion Support
Midvale Early Childhood & Parenting
Child Australia
Ultimately MEYAG aim to achieve positive and sustainable outcomes for
children and families as identified by the AEDI and other social indicators.
MEYAG hold a planning day every two years to help the group identify its
priorities and action areas. The day involves:
Bringing MEYAG members and others together to review evidence such as
AEDI and ABS data.
To brainstorm issues affecting families and young children in the Midland
area and;
To discuss in detail strategies that could be undertaken to:
 Enhance the health and wellbeing of young children and;
 Enhance parent empowerment and capacity
Some of the recent MEYAG initiatives that have been a result of
planning days in 2008 and 2010 include:
Speech and Language Professional Development (2009)
Play and Story-time Sessions (2009)
Fun Around Books (FAB) subgroup (2010-current)
Playgroups on school sites (2010-current)
Connecting Community through the AEDI aims to generate a
community response to the AEDI.
MEYAG will work alongside communities to assist the development
and implementation of new projects.
Four training sessions organised
for childcare workers & early
education teachers
Early brain development
2008 AEDI results
Strategies and resources to address AEDI
Referral pathways to Community and Allied
Health services
• High levels of vulnerability in the language &
cognitive skills domain.
• Many children arriving at school with
language delays undiagnosed and untreated.
• Significant delays in accessing public allied
health support through Child Development
• Child care is where early development
unfolds, for a vast majority of young children.
• 91 people attended all four sessions.
• ‘How to talk to parent’s and ‘referral of children with possible speech and language delays’ was considered
valuable information by participants.
• Participants felt more encouraged to act where they might have areas of concern with children.
• Eight participants were challenged to be even more intentional in their interactions and activities with
children to enrich their learning environment.
• Many commented on the need to not underestimate children’s capacity for learning and look for natural
opportunities to make a language-rich environment.
Midland Early Years projects rely on
committed and passionate people...
Partnerships between agencies
and communities are crucial...
Our planning days are important in
affirming the role of the group
and our priorities...
Creating a united and leading
body for early years in

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