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Connect Autumn




The benefits of Family Day Care


the most from the


Fall into the Autumn spirit

1300 946 337

What you told us

CEO’s message

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback! It helps us to improve our services and we are very pleased to hear that we are making positive differences to so many of your lives.


Autumn is such a beautiful time of year in Victoria. Check out page 6 for some fun and cheap ways to enjoy autumn scenery in and around the Melbourne region.

of people we help believe we do it quickly enough to make a difference.

The staged roll out of the NDIS in Victoria is due to arrive in the Southern Melbourne region from 1 September 2018. This includes those living in the local government areas of Cardinia, Casey and Greater Dandenong. Windermere is already providing NDIS services and is assisting many people to make the transition to the NDIS. Turn to page 4 to read more about the personal experiences of some who have already made the transition with us.

of the people we worked with felt respected by their worker.

Name Robyn Sheridan Role Educational Program Coordinator Background I have always been interested in early childhood. I have a Diploma of Children’s Service at Melbourne University and have worked previously in vacation care programs and also within ELC and preschool settings. Why Windermere I have worked for Windermere in both the In Home Care and Family Day Care areas. Recently I moved into a Family Day Care role which covers all the regions that we operate in. The role has many facets to it, and focuses on supporting our Educators to offer an amazing service to our children and their families. I make on site visits and provide resources, training and networking opportunities for our Educators. No day is ever the same as there is lots of variety on offer due to the individual space of each Family Day Care environment. I enjoy contact

I hope you enjoy reading all the articles and please take the opportunity to provide any feedback or share your thoughts and stories with us by emailing

Robyn with the children and their families and getting to know the educators. Outside of Windermere I am married with three teenage daughters. We all love to be in the great outdoors so we do lots of camping and bushwalking trips.

Network with us!

Like and follow our pages to stay up-to-date on all things Windermere.


Almost All

In the spotlight...

We hope that as we continue to send out this newsletter, you will feel part of a stronger, more connected community and become more aware of the services we offer.

Dr Lynette Buoy Chief Executive Officer

people we helped said they would recommend Windermere to other people.

If you’d like to tell us how you think we are going (good or otherwise) email us at we’d love to hear from you.

We are very keen to let you know about the range of group programs and activities that we provide. They are designed to give you or someone you know practical support and assistance in times of need. Check out the back page or visit for our current list of programs.

Best wishes.

98 in every 100





Family Day Care: The benefits for you and your family Under the family day care model educators care for children from within their own homes. They are qualified and follow the same National Quality Framework Guidelines as child care centre providers.

“I accept the children into my home as if they were my own, and we celebrate their learning milestones together,” says Windermere Family Day Care Educator Danielle Williamson.

Windermere provides a Family Day Care service for infants, pre-schoolers and school age children. The flexible hours mean that the Family Day Care option is particularly suited for working parents and carers who have non-standard work hours or school age children who require before and after school care. Danielle says she looks after children at all hours, including weekends, overnight, evenings and early mornings.

“Families love the flexible hours options. They can choose to do Danielle, like all our qualified educators, minimum blocks of two hours for develops regular individualised school age children or five hour learning plans for each child based on developmental milestones. These are then blocks for pre-schoolers” she says. regularly reviewed and amended.

Due to the small group model Family Day Care options can suit children who feel comfortable in more intimate settings. Educators can look after a maximum of four pre-schoolers or seven school age children at any one time. Because of the level of support she provides, several of the children Danielle cares for have special needs. Danielle is able to draw on her own experiences in this regard as she is also the mother of children with special needs.

The comfort and familiarity of the home care based settings also allow children to enjoy a strong, highly supportive relationship with their educator.

“It’s like an extension on being a mum. I love that the children can be in a relaxed setting. We focus on developing their independence and life skills, not just the academic,” says Danielle.

The small groups give children the opportunity to enjoy outings similar to what they might experience in a family. For example Educators might take children on excursions to the park or library. From a personal point of view Danielle says being a Family Day Care Educator allows her to combine earning an income while being available to her own children.

“It is the best job on the planet for running your family and your own business,” she says.

Benefits of Family Day Care

– it takes a village to raise a child! • Provides flexible and extended hours of care. This can include holidays, evenings, weekends and before and after school hours care • Greater community connections – the support of a registered, accredited, community-based organisation. Many educators take their children on community excursions or to registered play groups • Offers a safe and nurturing home-based environment • Provides individualised learning programs for each child • Has professionally qualified educators who are supported and overseen by Windermere • Operates within the Early Years Learning Framework under the requirements of the National Quality Framework

Enrol today! Call 1300 946 337 or Email 3

Gain the most from the NDIS Windermere works with you to smooth your transition to the NDIS and ensure you maximise your outcomes. “When done well, NDIS plans can instigate very positive life changes,” says Emmanuel Bour, Windermere’s NDIS and Transition Manager. He gives the example of a young woman who Windermere recently worked with to establish and achieve NDIS goals. Together we implemented a range of supports to allow her to engage in various volunteer roles and attend her local gym. “She is now a different person…one who is happy and willing to try different things and socialise with others,” says Emmanuel. Each person who qualifies for NDIS funding has to have an approved plan. This plan must include your goals and the supports you need to achieve them. The plan must be written and approved by a planner from the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), rather than Windermere.

Cameron and Michelle’s story

However, Windermere can assist you to prepare for the NDIS planning process and maximise the effectiveness of your plans. “We sit down together and look at the goals of what you want to achieve. For example, if it is to become more involved in the community, we would look at the supports and processes you require,” says Emmanuel.

We have been providing services to Cameron for a number of years. The pair recently took up the offer of attending an NDIS planning preparation session with Windermere prior to meeting with Cameron’s NDIS planner.

Emmanuel says in order to maximise plan outcomes you should gather a range of evidence about the supports you require. This may be school reports, medical assessments or diagnostic reports.

NDIS Preparation sessions

We are holding a series of free group information sessions. To find out more go to:

NDIS pre-planning sessions

We also offer individual NDIS pre-planning sessions to help you prepare for your NDIS planning session, at a one off cost of $50. To book or find out more talk to the team 1300 946 337 or

17 year old Cameron and mum Michelle say that preparation and knowledge have helped ease their NDIS transition process.

“Windermere’s pre-planning information sessions are definitely worthwhile, they helped us thoroughly prepare for the session with our NDIS planner and to consider things we would never have done before,” says Michelle. One of Cameron’s goals under the NDIS is to increase his independence. As part of his NDIS plan he has requested funding for modifications to his home. This will enable Cameron to be in his home by himself and to feel safer and more self-reliant. “I want to be more independent and also to finish year 12 this year,” says Cameron. Under Cameron’s new NDIS plan he will receive an increase to the supports he currently has. “There are some aspects of Cameron’s new plan that we would have had to wait years for under the old system or not have had at all,” says Michelle. She believes the thorough preparation, self-reflection and evidence gathering was one reason why Cameron was able to achieve so much in his plan. “To make the most of the NDIS I would encourage people to be honest with themselves. Your planner needs to know what your day looks like and how much work you do trying to go about your day,” she says.

NDIS upcoming rollout dates: 1 April 2018 Bayside Peninsula:

Bayside, Frankston, Glen Eira, Kingston, Mornington Peninsula, Port Philip, Stonnington


1 September 2018 Southern Melbourne: Cardinia, Casey, Greater Dandenong

Windermere is a registered service provider under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Our ELC and kinder children graduate together Nine young kindergarten graduates who commenced at our Early Learning Centre in Frankston as babies achieved a special landmark at the end of last year. Poppy, William, Frankie, Maali, Allira, Heathcliff, Peta, Annabelle and Lorienne, who are now five and six years old, all attended the centre since its first year of operation in 2013. The children were part of the Early Learning Centre’s foundation graduation class in 2017. “It’s really fun here. There is always lots to do,” said 5 year old Maali about the program. Centre Director Sarah Dowling, along with two other team members, Navi and Jamie have also been at the Centre since it opened in February 2013. “It’s hard to imagine that the children we first met as babies have graduated kindergarten. The early years play a significant part in children’s development and we have been privileged to be able to nurture and care for these children as we support them in their learning and life journeys,” said Sarah.

Sarah says one of the key reasons families stay with our Early Learning Centre is that we support both children and families. “We build strong relationships with families, it’s as much about supporting them as the children,” she said. Our Early Learning Centre operates a three and four year old kindergarten program within a long day care centre setting.

Kindergarten Information Sessions

Wednesday 18 April 2018 6pm-7pm Windermere ELC 1a Holmes St, Frankston RSVP Sarah Dowling phone 9784 5300 or email windermereELC@windermere.o

How speech therapy helps your child Speech Pathologists work with you and your child to develop their confidence and skills in communication, speech, pronounciation and language.

and social interaction. Our sessions are designed to be fun and interactive for the children. We will work with you and your child at home, school or pre-school or on site at our clinic.

Our Speech Therapists also provide support for children experiencing feeding and swallowing difficulties and assist nonverbal children to overcome communication barriers.

Other early childhood intervention and therapy services include: Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Psychology, Early Intervention and Plan Management.

Speech therapy can ultimately enable children to improve a wide range of skills such as their learning, listening, literacy, play

To find out more visit or give the team a call on 1300 946 337.


Fall into the Autumn Spirit!

Autumn is a great time to head into the great outdoors in and around Melbourne. We’ve listed just a few of the places that offer spectacular Autumn scenery. Features spectacular garden beds of rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias amongst wide lawns and plenty of spots for picnics. Children will enjoy spotting the ladybird themed artworks painted on stones throughout the park. Free entry.

This is one of the stopping points for the well known Puffing Billy train.

Emerald Lake Park Emerald

McClelland Sculpture Park Langwarrin

The park features a lake, café, two children’s playgrounds and extensive walking tracks. Entry to the park is free but there is a small cost for car parking.

Discover over 100 works of art in a beautiful natural setting. Entry by donation.

Wilson’s Botanic Park Berwick

Co-location connects victims of crime with support services


Features an ornamental lake populated by turtles and ducks, plus extensive gardens and a children’s play park. Free entry.

Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne

Showcases beautiful Australian plant life. Free entry.

Our many services work together with you for a better life We offer a range of services to improve lives and strengthen our community.

Windermere will be able to offer a more responsive and personal service to victims of crime in the Sale area thanks to a co-location initiative with Sale Police. “The partnership between Sale Police and Windermere is critical to the service we provide,” says Windermere CEO Dr Lynette Buoy.

The Dandenong Ranges Botanic Garden Olinda

Children and young people A range of counselling, allied health and early childhood intervention services.

Parents and families A range of programs and services around assisting families to meet challenges, improve wellbeing and access appropriate supports. Windermere CEO Dr Lynette Buoy with Acting Superintendent Wellingto n East Gippsland Region Robert Wall ace

People with disability

Windermere provides psychological support to victims of crime and assists them to better understand the court system and what to expect.

Windermere assists you to manage your supports and achieve your goals.

“The co-location is another step in providing the best support and access that we can. We know that if we get in early we do make a positive difference,” says Dr Buoy.

A range of programs to assist families who are or are at risk of being homeless or facing eviction.

For more information:

Confidential counselling and support for victims of crime and family violence.

Do you or someone you know need support?

Homelessness support

Victims of crime, assault or trauma

To find out more phone the team today on 1300 946 337 or visit

Windermere in the community Our team have been busy out and about in the community, here’s a snap shot of some of what we have been up to:

Cardinia Youth Mental Health Pilot Project Windermere is running an “Open Minds” mental health support program for youth aged 12 – 16 years through MyPlace in Pakenham. This year Windermere will also continue to provide support to at risk youth in their own homes. The trial program, which is funded by Cardinia Shire commenced last year and support workers made weekly on site visits to the person they were working with. Many of the 31 youth who have been supported by the program have complex mental health issues or are not attending school or work regularly. For more information or to book, visit or call 1300 946 337.

Fun for Children’s Week The Windermere team attended the Children’s Week Fun Day celebrations at the Old Cheese Factory in Berwick during October. The week celebrates children’s rights and celebrates their abilities and achievements. For more information about our early childhood services visit

Support packages make families safer Between July and December last year Windermere provided practical support and assistance to 282 families leaving violent situations. The packages provide emergency financial support for items such as home security, rental bonds and relocation costs.

Break the silence on family violence Our Communities for Children Cranbourne program is promoting awareness of the impact of family violence by supporting the Clothesline Project. The Clothesline Project invites victim survivors of family violence and their supporters to decorate tee shirts about their experiences, which are then publicly displayed. This provides a healing opportunity for the survivors and raises community awareness. The tee shirts were displayed at the Casey Cardinia Cranbourne Library from 23 January to 16 February. Over the next few months they will be displayed at various locations across the Casey region.

Follow us to find out more:





What’s On

Windermere offers a range of programs and initiatives to support the wellbeing and development of you and your family.

For dates contact the Group Programs Coordinator 9705 3200 or check out the website

Parenting lost in translation

Women Managing Anger

A four week program encouraging families from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds to share their journey of raising children in Australia.

A six week program for women who want practical strategies and support to take control of their anger.

Resilience for Life

123 Magic Parenting

Learn positive ways of dealing with day to day problems, life stresses and changes.

A three week program to assist parents to manage difficult behaviour in their children.

Useful Contacts Windermere:

1300 946 337 Counselling Intake: 9705 3296 For enquiries about service, referral pathways and support. Victims Assistance Program (Gippsland): (03) 5135 1500 or (Southern): (03) 9705 3200

Other agencies: SECADA (Drug and Alcohol Recovery Support) 1800 142 536 1800RESPECT (1800 737 732) Family violence and sexual assault counselling services. Disability Services Commissioner Complaints: 1800 677 342 (free call) General Enquiries: 1300 728 187 (local call) TTY 1300 726 563 Fax 03 8608 5765

Department of Health & Human Services Intake & Response Team 1300 131 079 For people with disabilities & their carers. Alfred Health 1800 052 222 Carer’s support (business hours) and emergency respite (24 hours)

In case of an emergency, please ring: 8

Lifeline: 13 11 14 Child Protection: 131 278

Parentline: 132 289 All other emergencies: 000

Connect Issue 6 Autumn  
Connect Issue 6 Autumn