Media Release by Senator the Hon Kay Patterson

Palmerston and Tiwi Communities for Children

Children and their families in Palmerston and the Tiwi Islands will have better access to support and services thanks to the Howard Government’s $3 million Communities for Childreninitiative.

The Minister for Family and Community Services, Senator Kay Patterson today launched the Palmerston and Tiwi Islands joint Communities for Children site, delivered by the Australian Red Cross.

“The initiative is aimed at improving outcomes for children up to five years of age, in particular their well-being across health, early learning and development, and support for their families,” Senator Patterson said.

“We are pleased the Australian Red Cross is involved in this joint site as its Northern Territory Division already operates 35 different programs and assists around 40,000 Territorians annually.

“The Palmerston site is made up of the suburbs Gray, Moulden, Durack, Driver, Bakewell and Woodroffe and the Tiwi Islands site comprises the Nguiu, Milikapiti, Pirlangimpi and Wurankuwu communities.

“The Australian Red Cross is currently working through the implementation phase of this initiative, including community engagement and consultation and the formulation of a community strategic plan, which will drive the program.

“The project is funded under the Howard Government’s $490 million Stronger Families and Communities Strategy and the Communities for Children initiative will directly assist young children, their family, community and their broader social, economic and cultural environments.

“The initiative aims to build strong partnerships between parents, community leaders and members, family and community service providers, business and other service providers and all levels of government, to build a common goal of improved outcomes for young children.

“Children hold Australia’s future in their hands and it is our role, as parents and decision makers, to help these children to have the best possible start in life, including health, education and care, and all within a safe environment,” Senator Patterson said.