This vignette shares learning’s and reflections for creating a sense of belonging with families as told by staff at the Early Bird Early Childhood and Learning Centre, Boondall, Queensland. 


Creating a sense of belonging with family: QCOSS EMBRACE 2015

Kelly: We have a lot of variety of things that go on within the centre that involves parent input or parent participation.  I like that the parents trust us looking after their children and know that they too are a part of our family not just the children.

Catherine: We have a mum at our centre who has 2 little boys with us and she’s a Phillipino lady and she doesn’t have any family or close relatives with her and  very reticent, very shy lady.

Kelly: Mum was quite shy to start off with the children came on the bus so the only person that would see mum or dad would be our bus driver.

Catherine: But she sends the most amazing lunches with her children every day.  So bad that we would be salivating smelling this food and dishing it out to the children.  It was just amazing.  And everyone could smell this beautiful food. So Andrew phoned her and told her that we were just in awe of these wonderful meals she sent with her children and asked her if she would be kind enough to make a dish for us on a Friday of which he would compensate her so that the staff would stop salivating.  She gladly agreed and we’ve been having wonderful Friday lunches ever since.  But more importantly she has got such a confidence boost from that.  Much more esteem and she walks in here with that food now and she feels like king of the castle.  Sometimes she doesn’t come in with the food and Andrew will go and collect it and that’s okay!  That’s how much we want it!  She’ll cook for Christmas parties.

Kelly: I think she was quite surprised at how friendly we were.   That she didn’t need to be shy of coming in. After a little while we built this trust with this family and soon enough she was in a few times a week.  She had no reason to bring the boys in or come in herself she was just happy to come and have a chat to us and see the progress of her children.

Catherine: Because she’s been able to come into the centre and talk and slowly she’s talking more about the programming and the areas she’d like to see done.  Because she has that confidence.  She belongs.  She’s got the belonging.  And it’s really important the becoming is a really important part of early childhood but the belonging must go with it.  


Camera Operator and Sound Recordist - Ranu James

Interviews by - Cherie Lamb

Director Editor - Ranu James

Thanks to:

Kelly Wright - Educator

Catherine Dalton - Educational Leader

Andrew Wilson - Licensee, Early Bird Early Childhood & Learning Centre, Brassall 

Music: Dance and be free, The Mosaic Project, Children’s Songs for Peace and a Better World Featuring Brett Dennen 2003

We would like to acknowledge that this film was developed and filmed on the land of the Jagera nations.

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