One Tree Community Services are proud to announce the new Ieramagardu (Roebourne) Pathways Program, with support from the Woodside Development Fund. Together, we’re improving outcomes for children while supporting parents with local training and employment.
Launching in 2022, the co-designed program includes four new initiatives that build on the strength of existing local services; a bush kindy, a language program, creche and on-site mentor program.
Like many regional communities in Australia, parents in Roebourne have identified that they need better access to early childhood development services, childcare, and local career pathways. The Roebourne Pathways Program has been created with community to help fill this need.
The program was co-designed with the local community throughout 2021 and endorsed by the community-led 6718 Yandi for Change governance process earlier this year. Elders, parents, the school and other local stakeholders took part in the planning process that helped inform program design and implementation. The result is a local program that fits the unique needs of this community.
In the bush kindy, children will learn on Country from local community members. The language program will teach Ngarluma and Yindjibarndi languages to children of all ages in both the long day care and the child and parent centre.
“The Pathways Program will improve learning outcomes for children while also giving parents a much-needed opportunity to upskill or train. This project supports local Aboriginal people to establish careers locally, especially in early education and care. There will always be a need for childcare professionals in Roebourne. We aim to hire local people for these roles.” One Tree Community Services CEO, Karri Hillier, said.
The creche will support families so parents can study or attend training in the child and parent centre while their children are cared for, while the mentor program focuses on building local capacity and leadership in early childhood education. It will support local trainees to complete their certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care.
Karri Hillier says, “We believe in working with communities. Inviting local people to become part of the solution provides the community with ownership over the outcomes. Together, we’re able to create more impactful programs. Importantly, it ensures we work alongside and learn from Aboriginal people as experts.”
This project is made possible through funding from the Woodside Development Fund (Fund). Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill said Woodside has long recognised the importance of early childhood development for vulnerable children and the lack of programs to provide that in our host community of Roebourne.
“It was essential for Woodside that the program was co-designed with community and implemented by existing service provider One Tree Community Services, who has established relationships with Traditional Owners, families and local stakeholder organisations.
“By launching the Roebourne Pathways Program, we seek to ensure children have access to high quality, culturally responsive early learning opportunities and that they are ready to succeed in school. The training pathway support for local people aims to build on the critically important pool of early learning educators for the Pilbara.”
This is a collaborative project and One Tree Community Services will be working with 6718 Yandi for Change, Roebourne District High School, Department of Education, Woodside, other stakeholders and of course, the Roebourne community.
“The Pathways Program is led by the community, and they will be at the centre of its future. The community can own the Pathways Program and have their say. It’s all for them, their children and the coming generations,” Gurlu Gurlu Maya Child and Parent Centre Co-ordinator, Miranda Ihanimo said.