Anglicare SA

HIPPY celebrations in the South

During September, the AnglicareSA HIPPY program staff and participants celebrated national HIPPY Week in the southern suburbs.

What does HIPPY stand for? Home Interaction Program for Parents and Youngsters (www.hippyaustralia.bsl.org.au).

Around 40 families in the southern suburbs are engaged in the HIPPY program – a two-year, home-based, early learning and parenting program for families with young children.

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HIPPY provides kids with a structured, education-focused program that lays the foundation for success at school. Parents teach their child literacy, numeracy and language skills as well as physical skills so they are school-ready and develop a love of learning that lasts.

HIPPY supports parents in their role as their child’s first teacher. The program targets communities that experience various forms of social disadvantage. Home tutors who have been recruited from the local community work with parents as peers over two years during the critical period of the child’s transition to full-time school. HIPPY aims to ensure children start school on an equal footing with their more advantaged peers. It also works to strengthen communities and the social inclusion of parents and children.

AnglicareSA reviews with HIPPY parents in Week 5 of the program.  Here’s what they discovered:
o All children involved the HIPPY program are now being read to
o 88% reported an improvement in the relationship with their child
o 95% agreed HIPPY had taught them about how their child learns and grows
o 76% said HIPPY had helped to connect them with their community
o 84% said HIPPY had taught them about useful groups and organisations in their community.

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Background:
An estimated 500,000 children (12 per cent of the total) are growing up in poverty in Australia, which is roughly in the middle of the range of all OECD countries in terms of the percentage of children living in poverty. Analysis of the Australian Early Development Index (AEDI) reveals that 23 per cent of Australian children in their first year of full-time school have been assessed as developmentally vulnerable on one or more of the five school readiness developmental measures of the AEDI and that there are higher proportions of children who are developmentally vulnerable living in the most socioeconomically disadvantaged communities (DEEWR 2009).

There are limited positions available for this FREE program. For more information please contact your AnglicareSA HIPPY Coordinator.

Elizabeth Grove – Laura Romeo – (08) 8209 5743.

Onkaparinga – Steph Ashby – (08) 8186 8942.

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The Brotherhood of St Laurence holds the licence to operate HIPPY in Australia. The Home Interaction Program for Parents and Youngsters (HIPPY) is funded by the Australian Government through the Department of Social Services.