Cardinia Lakes Early Learning Centre attains Vic Government recognition for all health areas
Pakenham early childhood service Cardinia Lakes Early Learning Centre embedded its commitment to health and wellbeing in 2019 by joining the Healthy Early Childhood Services Achievement Program, which it completed in October 2021, attaining Victorian Government recognition for all health areas.
For other services who may be contemplating the program, or indeed making changes to other aspects of health and wellbeing service owner Tamika Hicks recommends teamwork and focussing on one area at a time as being key elements for success.
Doing so, she said, ensured that the service and its team members were “giving our all to each area and implementing lasting change.”
Cardinia Lakes is a long day care and kindergarten program which educates and cares for 120 children each day. As a result of completing the program Ms Hicks said the service is better equipped to assist and support families and the wider community for better health outcomes for children.
“By completing the Healthy Early Childhood Services Achievement Program, our service is confident in knowing that we are implementing healthy changes and leading the way in health and wellbeing for our children and their families,” she explained.
With the support of Health Promotion Practitioner, Belinda Hogg, from Monash Health, the centre has developed several new policies and implemented a variety of initiatives since commencing their Achievement Program journey. Key achievements include:
- A SunSmart membership
- The development of a vegetable and herb garden where children are involved in planting, water and cultivating – a hands-on approach to learning
- Implementing Bush Kinder – children visit the local quarry for exercise and exploration with nature
- A centre sports program – children are involved in a variety of additional sport and ball games
- Regular community excursions – all age groups across the service utilise the local park and enjoy ball games
- Involvement in Mind Your Head – a program to support mental health and wellbeing for educators
- Implementing the See More Safety Program – educating children about stranger danger, safety at home, around water and at public places
For more information about the Achievement Program please see here.
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