Connecting with the community pays off
Bringing children and families together by connecting with service groups throughout their community has paid off for the team at Goodstart Forbes.
From working with Bunnings, to taking part the ANZAC Day march and enjoying a visit from residents at the local nursing home, the children at Forbes are loving expanding their horizons.
Centre director Vickie Spencer said the centre aimed to help build children's interest in exploring their self-identity and being part of their community through regular interactions.
“At Goodstart Forbes we believe children’s learning can be extended by providing opportunities to maximise their learning,” Ms Spencer said.
“Being part of a small rural community allows us to develop strong links where we can draw on community knowledge and expertise to provide children with learning experiences that are meaningful and relevant to them.”
Their new sustainable garden was created thanks to Forbes Concrete, where children from the centre arranged the delivery of soil, and Bunnings Forbes where they bought citrus trees.
Bunnings also helped with the yard renovation by sending two employees to help the children and educators to establish the sustainable garden using donated plants.
The children also recently took part in the ANZAC march, helped with Clean Up Australia Day and have visited the House with No Steps biscuit factory. They’ve checked out a pet shop, hair dressing salon, Super Bee, Forbes North working farm and the local library.
Community groups have been invited to visit the centre, including residents from the local nursing home, firefighters from the station, a dentist and the ‘Drumbeat’ live music show.
“Excursions, participating in and contributing to community events, inviting community members and organisations into our service all help to connect children with their community and to develop a real sense of belonging,” Ms Spencer said.
Goodstart regional manager Lisa Chiovo praised the centre for its commitment to extending the children’s learning beyond the walls of the classroom.