Tweddle World Mental Health Day

The West is Best For New Centre of Parenting Excellence

The West is Best For New Centre of Parenting Excellence

By Kerrie Gottliebsen

LeadWest and a delegation of Mayors and Council Chief Executives from Melbourne’s West have presented a set of infrastructure and investment proposals to Turnbull government Ministers, the Federal Infrastructure Department, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Labor MPs.

One of the six key recommendations includes an $11 million investment in a Centre of Parenting Excellence at Tweddle’s Footscray site. The policy priority captures the social and economic benefits of improving services in the first 1,000 days of a child’s life and the pressure on services in Melbourne’s west where 250 babies are born every week.

Tweddle, a Statewide Public Hospital, has been supporting vulnerable parents, babies and toddlers for 97 years. Currently, 40% of families admitted to a residential or day stay program are from the regions of Maribyrnong, Hobson’s Bay, Moonee Valley, Wyndham, Brimbank and Melton.

Tweddle’s Director of Clinical Services/Nursing Kirsty Evans concurred with the policy priority’s recommendations which stressed the need for investment in infrastructure that keeps pace with the west’s population growth.

Tweddle is an early intervention and prevention heath service. Admission is through referrals from health professionals including Doctors (GPs) and Maternal & Child Health (MCH) Nurses when families are identified as needing more intensive therapeutic support beyond what is offered by Universal services.

“A purpose built early parenting support centre will see Tweddle’s capacity to help vulnerable families nearly double as well as buffer more parents, babies and toddlers from adversity and  improve long term outcomes” said Kirsty.

“This will not only help relieve ongoing waiting lists for distressed families but offer additional therapeutic consultation areas and conferencing capabilities for parents and professionals across the State.”

“With its burgeoning birth rates and higher than State average levels of disadvantage, Melbourne’s west is the ideal location to build a hub focussed squarely on shaping life chances for babies and toddlers.”

Tweddle is inviting social impact investment to help make Footscray the home of Victoria’s new ‘Centre of Parenting Excellence.’ A building appeal has been established with tax deductible status. Naming opportunities within the Centre are being considered.

Tweddle Centre of Parenting Excellence
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