Purpose of grant
Integrated Children’s Centres are key hubs for the community, bringing together a range of services where professionals work together to deliver education, care, health and support services to children and their families. They can provide a focal point for new communities in growth areas, but are equally valuable in improving the accessibility, quality and integration of early childhood services in established metropolitan and regional areas. Integrated service delivery is particularly important in establishing and maintaining engagement with vulnerable and disadvantaged families as their children move through the service system, for example from Maternal and Child Health to playgroups and then formal early learning programs.
Integrated Children’s Centres may be co-located with schools or community facilities such as neighbourhood houses, community centres or libraries.
For more information, see: Integrated Children's Services
To be eligible for funding, Integrated Children’s Centres funded through the Children’s Facilities Capital Program must provide at least all of the following:
- two rooms for a funded kindergarten program for children in the year before school (this can be sessional and/or integrated within long day care)
- long day care (unless evidence is provided that there is no unmet demand for long day care in the local area)
- Maternal and Child Health services
- early years health services
- family services.
Integrated Children’s Centres may also incorporate flexible, multi-purpose spaces and provision for other services that meet the needs of the local community, for example:
- three year old kindergarten
- supported playgroups and / or community parent-led playgroups
- parenting groups or programs
- occasional care
- family day care program coordination
- counselling services
- community meeting spaces
- outside school hours care
- adult education programs.
Eligible organisations can apply for up to 40 per cent of the total project cost, capped at $1.6 million per grant (GST exclusive). The 40 per cent cap on the contribution to the total project cost should be calculated in relation to early childhood and directly related facilities only. For example, if a library or sporting and recreational facilities form part of the centre, the estimated costs for these elements cannot be included in the calculation of the 40 per cent maximum contribution. Potential applicants should contact DET if they are unsure about how the 40 per cent requirement applies in relation to a proposed project.
Integrated Children’s Centres must be completed within 24 months of the execution of the Common Funding Agreement (CFA) or as otherwise agreed with DET. All Common Funding Agreements must be signed no later than 8 weeks following official notification of a successful grant application.
In cases where a project is delayed for an unreasonable length of time, or where substantive changes to scope are made after funding has been approved, DET reserves the right to cancel the grant and, if applicable, recoup any payments that have already been provided.