The model for integrated early childhood development helps organisations understand how an integrated serve delivery approach works.
It has 3 layers:
These reflect practical approaches and dimensions of integrated service delivery. Elements include:
Universal services often function as soft entry points for families to then access more specialised supports.
Targeted services are directed to individuals, groups or communities at higher risk than the general population or with identified needs. Some examples include services available to children with a disability, communication difficulties or behavioural problems, young parents, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families, and culturally and linguistically diverse families.
As the degree of integration across services becomes more sophisticated, we would expect to see an evolution towards interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary working (See page 18 in Moore and Skinner's 2011 Background paper: an integrated approach to early childhood development for more information).
In turn, it contributes through objective evaluation to the body of research that informs practice revision, future policy development and continuous improvement in practice models.
'Partnerships [can be] between families and service providers, between service providers, and between government and service providers.' (Moore, 2012, p8.)
Home visiting services offer practical support to children and families in their own home. Home visits and support are provided by trained professionals on a one-to-one basis.
Outreach and mobile services include programs or activities delivered within the local community area and bring services to the community rather than the community coming to a centre or hub. These may be delivered from community spaces such as parks or community halls; it may also occur within other services to provide additional support or training; for example, extra support to children at school or in a childcare centre.
Virtual access points may include websites, social media sites or helplines where communities can access information.
Culturally competent practice involves being responsive and sensitive to, and respectful of, the cultural and social beliefs, values and practices of all cultural groups, so that children and families have the opportunity to access all services provided. There are many factors which can limit family access to services such as language barriers, lack of information about services, and fear of perceived 'authority'.
Culturally competent engagement requires explicit recognition of the diversity of family circumstances, structures and beliefs about children and parenting roles across cultures and traditions.
These are the operational functions an organisation uses to translate the service delivery elements into practice and maintain the integrity of the model. Enablers include:
We do not expect that every organisation will implement all components of the model, however they should be able to see their work within the model.
To help organisations reflect on how they deliver services, we have developed a reflective tool. Services can use the reflective tool to assist them further with integration.
Next: Reflective tool
This page was last reviewed on 13 Aug 2013
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