Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Playgroups great for kids and parents

One of nine Queensland playgroups piloted under a new Federal Government children’s initiative was opened today by Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony

“Playgroups are about children and parents having fun. They help children learn new skills and assist parents interact with their children in a supportive learning environment.

“Around the world, childhood experts are promoting the importance of children learning through play. Positive experiences in the early years of childhood are vital, and provide children with long-lasting benefits emotionally, socially and in education.”

“The playgroup launched this morning at Griffith University is part of a trial of supported playgroups.

“Supported playgroups differ from normal playgroups in that they are more formally organised, operate in partnership with local communities or government agencies, and have a paid coordinator who runs the activities for the parents and children.

“The supported playgroup also aims to develop links with other community and government agencies, particularly to support families in high need areas.

“Griffith University supported playgroup will cater mainly for young mothers from the Logan and Beenleigh areas. The University is also assisting with some research into the effectiveness of the scheme and is exploring ways for students to be involved in the group.

“Playgroups have been a part of the Coalition Government’s early intervention and prevention approach. Through the Stronger Families and Communities Strategy, there are projects focused on rural and remote communities to improve parenting skills, children’s social development and community networks.

“Playgroups are part of the Coalition’s commitment to supporting young families and ensuring Australian children get the best possible start in life,” Mr Anthony said.