Shoalhaven-developed program boosts inclusion for kids with disabilities

Shoalhaven-developed program boosts inclusion for kids with disabilities

An innovative, Shoalhaven-developed program that encourages inclusion in the early years of life will be discussed at a free public forum in Wollongong on Thursday 20 November.

The event is the second forum of UOW's Three Chimneys Public Forum Series, which is hosted by the Early Start Research Institute.

Guest speaker, Ms Ginger O’Brien, CEO of Noah’s Shoalhaven, will discuss the Kids Together program, which her team developed in 2013.

Kids Together is an innovative trans-disciplinary model of service delivery for early intervention, which targets children aged 0-8 years with disabilities and additional needs.

Using early childhood education centres as the starting point, the Kids Together model aims to deliver early education, therapy and family support services in a mainstream preschool or day care centre setting. It also supports parents and carers through home visits and during transition when starting preschool and moving into school.

The program is already being trialled at a number of Early Start Engagement Centres throughout the Illawarra and Shoalhaven. 

Ms O’Brien, in collaboration with UOW researchers Professor Kathleen Clapham and Ms Claire Manning, who are independently evaluating the program, will lead the free public forum on the program, and discuss how it is currently being implemented in early childhood education centres across the Illawarra and the objectives and processes for the evaluation. The audience will be invited to join in a discussion about the future possibilities for the program.

Event details: UOW’s Three Chimneys Public Forum is on Thursday 20 November from 4.30-6pm at Three Chimneys – Unit 3 63/65 Crown Street, Wollongong (behind the IPAC Theatre). Bookings are essential. RSVP to Jacob Evans -

Media contact: Elise Pitt, Media & PR Officer, +61 2 4221 3079, +61 422 959 953 or