Family Start programme

  • Wyatt Creech

The Government's new early intervention programme, Family Start, is attracting the interest of the Australian Federal Government.

Federal Senator Amanda Vanstone is in New Zealand and wants to know more about the

"Senator Vanstone meets with officials from the Ministry of Education in Auckland today to find out how Family Start works and what its aims are."

The meeting will provide Senator Vanstone with information to feed into work the Australian Federal Government is carrying out on early intervention programmes.

"Family Start is an intensive early intervention programme aimed at helping families to help themselves.

It is a key element in the Government 's wider Strengthening Families Strategy, which coordinates health, education and welfare services for high-risk families. The Government is funding three Family Start prototype services - in Rotorua, Whangarei and Ranui-Massey (West Auckland). The first of these is due to be offering services next month.

Senator Vanstone, Federal Minister for Justice and Customs, will meet with officials during a visit to Auckland where she will be attending the Australasian Police Ministers' Council Meeting.

The Ministers of Education, Health and Social Services, Work and Income were pleased to see the overseas interest in the Family Start programme.

"This is an exciting programme that will help children and families now and in the future. We are pleased to see interest from overseas in this key Government initiative," Education Minister Wyatt Creech said.