The first five years of a child’s life is a crucial milestone in brain development that establishes the path to a healthy adulthood. With 60,000 children in Australia considered to be developmentally vulnerable, Thrive by Five represents Minderoo’s efforts to encourage a long term and evidence-based approach to the way Australia prioritises its children. We are focused on partnerships with research institutions, investments at the community level and engagement with policy makers to help build the case for system-level change. We believe every child should, and can, thrive by the age of five.
Since 2012, Minderoo has invested in the Challis Parenting and Early Learning Centre in Armadale, Western Australia. Drawing on the science of brain development and in consultation with the community, an integrated, place-based approach was implemented to provide services from before birth through to grade six on the school grounds. The model has enabled local children to go from a position of disadvantage to exceeding the state average at the start of their education, proving the importance of early intervention. The Challis model has informed a number of policy initiatives and provides a platform for ongoing Minderoo’s advocacy around effective early childhood investment.
Minderoo is the proud Founding Partner of a new collaboration with the Telethon Kids Institute, focused on accelerating the translation of research to improve outcomes for children across Australia. The Collaboration is being led by Professor Donna Cross and guided by an Advisory Council that is independently chaired by Emeritus Professor Bill Louden.
Creating Parity – the Forrest Review was completed by Andrew Forrest in 2014 and included a recommendation that the Commonwealth Government increase its investment in integrated service delivery models for children and families. In response, the Connected Beginnings initiative was committed by the Federal Government and will roll out in an initial 13 communities commenced in 2017.