Two parents and their two young children are sitting on a couch reading information together on an iPad.

The early childhood approach

The early childhood approach can help you to get information and access to supports if you have concerns about your child’s development.

The early childhood approach aims to help your child join in daily activities and participate in your community.

Our specialist early childhood team will also let you know about other services in your community that may be able to support you.

Accessing our services

The early childhood approach supports children younger than 9 with developmental delay or disability in the North-East Melbourne, Hume Merri-bek, Western Melbourne, Brimbank Melton and Bayside Peninsula areas.

From 1 July 2023:

  • Children younger than 6 will continue being supported by an early childhood partner if they have:
    • a permanent disability
    • developmental delay
    • developmental concerns
  • Children under 6 with developmental concerns may be offered early supports.
  • Children aged 6-8 with developmental delay, and who are not eligible for NDIS funded supports will be supported through early connections.
  • Children younger than 9 with a permanent disability that are new to the NDIS from 1 July 2023 will be supported by our early childhood team.

If your child is currently a NDIS participant, and has a permanent disability, they will remain with our early childhood team until they turn 9

Children who are 9 and older will be supported by our Local Area Coordination team

There is no change to the NDIS eligibility requirements or the definition of developmental delay under the early intervention requirements (s25 of the NDIS Act).

More information on changes to the age range of children supported by the NDIS is available on the NDIS website.

Our early childhood team will:

  • Have a conversation with you to work out what support is best for your child and family.
  • Provide early connections that may include:
    • Connecting you to services and activities in your community such as playgroups, health services, childcare.
    • Giving you information to help you understand more about your child’s development.
    • Helping you to apply for the NDIS if your child is eligible and this is what you would like to do.
    • Offering you early supports if your child is younger than 6 with developmental concerns. Our team can work with you to support the goals you have for your child in everyday activities.

Contact our early childhood team

  • Phone:1300 275 634
  • Email:
  • Office Locations:
    • 293 High Street, Preston
    • 1H Homemaker Centre, 1185 – 1197 Pascoe Vale Road, Broadmeadows
    • 38 Playne Street, Frankston
    • 19 Corporate Drive, Heatherton
    • 27-35 Byron Street, Footscray
    • 367 – 369 High St, Melton
    • Level 3, 326 Keilor Road, Niddrie
    • Level 1, 236 Hoppers Lane, Werribee