Hundreds of Yarra Ranges families are better off, now benefiting from a range of allied health and emergency support services, including occupational therapy (OT), counselling, youth counselling, physiotherapy, dietetics and more at the Belgrave Community Hub that opened in April last year.
Inspiro Community Health provides speech therapy and OT for children aged aged 2-5 years at the hub to help them prepare for school, develop fine and gross motor skills, learn self-care and self-regulation and improve their attention abilities.
Danielle Pearce’s twin daughters Sam and Ava, both 4, were referred to an Inspiro Speech Therapist and Occupational Therapist by Council’s Maternal and Child Health Nurse.
“Sam has been receiving help with her speech development and for her personal growth,” Ms Pearce said.
“The Maternal and Child Health Nurse referred us to the new Belgrave Community Hub and also to Inspiro at Lilydale.
“We went to the nurse for their three and a half year old check, where it was suggested that Sam would really benefit from having more help with her speech and development.
“Some of the other benefits is the location and accessibility the hub offers - the car parking is great. “It’s affordable. We are able to come to speech pathology (speech therapy) weekly or fortnightly, as much as what we need and we don’t have to worry about the cost.”
Ms Pearce of Menzies Creek said her daughter Sam was really benefiting from just a few months of seeing an Inspiro Speech Therapist.
“They love going to speech therapy because there are lots of games. Everything is just here for them,” she said. “There are so many other services for families and it’s relaxing and comfortable.”
Belgrave Community Hub is managed by Inspiro Community Health and offers:
- Diabetes education
- Dietetics (nutritionists)
- Social support
- Occupational therapy
- Children's occupational therapy
- Children’s speech therapy
- Needle syringe exchange program
- Maternal and child health services provided by Yarra Ranges Council
- Dental services will be offered in 2019
Getting children ready for school with speech therapy
Inspiro Speech Pathologist Bronwyn Bail said the aim of the speech therapy services provided at the hub was to get children school-ready.
“By the time they are ready to go to school we want them to have caught up to the rest of their age group, so that includes speaking clearly, which tends to help their literacy development as well,” Ms Bail said.
Paediatric Occupational Therapy supports children of preschool age
Inspiro Paediatric Occupational Therapist Lauren Whiting said her services supported children of preschool age with their fine motor skills such as hand writing, and gross motor skills like running, jumping and catching a ball. You can view our article 10 ways to improve your child's fine motor skills here.
“We also assist with them learning self-care like dressing and toileting, and with their ability to pay attention and regulate their emotions,” Ms Whiting said.
“Occupational therapy is really important to ensure children will be active learners in their class room and not fall behind their peers, and to ensure they are happy and able to build relationships with those around them.”
The Belgrave Community Hub was jointly funded by the Federal Government ($3.835 million), the State Government ($1.723 million) with $723,000 from the Growing Suburbs Fund and $1m from the Community Infrastructure Fund, Yarra Ranges Council ($3.865 million) and Inspiro Community Health ($250,000).
The Hub is easy to get to
Belgrave Community Hub is close to public transport including Belgrave Train Station, the Hub is a 2 minute walk away at 1616-1624 Burwood Highway, Belgrave (next door to the Cameo Cinemas).
- Belgrave Community Hub is open from 8.45am – 4.45pm Monday to Friday.
- Contact Inspiro Community Health: 9738 8853
- Contact Council's Maternal and Child Health services: 1300 368 333
- Contact Dandenong Ranges Emergency Relief Service: 9754 7777
For more info visit: www.yarraranges.vic.gov.au/belgravecommunityhub
This article was written by Anna Chisholm from Yarra Ranges Council.
Inspiro provides health services to the outer east and outer south eastern suburbs of Melbourne including but no limited to: Badger Creek, Bayswater, Bayswater North, Belgrave, Belgrave Heights, Belgrave South, Boronia, Chirnside Park, Coldstream, Croydon North, Croydon, Croydon Hills, East Warburton, Emerald, Ferny Creek, Healesville, Heathmont, Hoddles Creek, Kallista, Kalorama, Kilsyth South, Kilsyth, Launching Place, Lilydale, Lysterfield, Macclesfield, Menzies Creek, Millgrove, Monbulk, Montrose, Mooroolbark, Mount Dandenong, Mount Evelyn, Narre Warren East, Olinda, Ringwood, Ringwood North, Sassafras, Selby, Seville, Seville East, Silvan, Tecoma, The Patch, Tremont, Upper Ferntree Gully, Upwey, Wandin, Wandin North, Warrandyte South, Warranwood, Warburton, Wesburn, Wonga Park, Woori Yallock, Yarra Valley, Yarra Glen, Yarra Junction and Yellingbo.