Grant Opportunity

Royal Far West
PO Box 52
MANLY, NSW, 2095

Paediatric Development Program – Diagnosis and Care for Country Kids -

Established in 1924, Royal Far West believes country children and families should have the same access to health and well-being services as city children. We turn this belief into reality by:
• Directly providing developmental health and social support services for isolated country children;
• Building the capacity of country children and families to support children experiencing developmental and behavioral issues;
• Advocating for and promoting the rights of country children in relation to their developmental and social health needs.

Our focus is integrated, multi-disciplinary developmental health, education and well-being programs for geographically isolated country children.
We operate mobile developmental health screening clinics for young children visiting remote/regional centres throughout NSW, providing linkages to local services where available, and residential and tele-health services when appropriate local supports do not exist.
Our Tele-health service provides speech therapy, occupational therapy, psychology and psychiatry to either the child’s school or home.

Through the Centre for Country Kids in Manly we provide:
• multi-disciplinary assessment and diagnosis of complex developmental health needs such as Autism, ADHD, learning difficulties and behavioural issues;
• speech and occupational therapy;
• psychiatry and psychology services;
• dental and orthodontic treatment;
• K-12 school for visiting children;
• parental education and family support;
• accommodation/meals for visiting families;
• recreational programs for visiting children & young people.

We measure our success in terms of direct and indirect beneficiaries of our services, and improved societal health, well-being, education and social outcome trend data for country children.

Children in regional and remote areas of Australia are 53% more likely to experience developmental health issues, and have far greater difficulty in accessing required services, than their city counterparts. During the 2017-18 financial year, we supported 8,258 children, parents and carers, educators and health professionals — our vision is to support 15,000 people annually by 2020.

  • Total Requested Amount
  • Total Raised From Donors
  • Remaining Goal

Project Details

Postcode where activity will take place: 2095

Start Date: 09/03/2019

End Date: 10/05/2019

Target Population:

  • Living environment > Rural/regional dwellers
  • Age Groups > Children (0-5)

Field of Interest:

  • Health > Healthcare access
  • Health > Healthcare equality

Project Summary:

Royal Far Wests’ Paediatric Development Program is a unique “one-stop-shop” developmental health program for country children who do not have access to services locally, and who desperately need specialist support.

This a specialist service providing comprehensive multidisciplinary assessment, diagnosis, review and treatment. Children and their families travel to Royal Far West in Manly for a coordinated week-long stay, during which they have scheduled access to a multidisciplinary team covering:
• Neurodevelopmental paediatrics
• Child Psychiatry
• Psychology
• Speech pathology
• Occupational therapy
• Social work
• Education and learning
• Dietetics
• Orthoptic and ophthalmologic services
• Oral health services

Families stay on-site at our accommodation facility, children attend the Royal Far West school between health and therapy sessions, and participate in structured recreation programs during their stay.

The objective is to provide a family-friendly, easy-to-access and non-judgemental means of obtaining diagnosis for complex developmental and behavioural issues, provide tailored treatment programs for each child in accordance with their specific circumstances, and support country families to access the care their children need.

The program is part-funded by NSW Health, with the remainder covered by Royal Far West’s benevolent funding.

All families participating in the Paediatric Development Program are geographically isolated and unable to access appropriate services close to home. The majority of families accessing the program are disadvantaged socio-economically. Some 30% of families accessing the program identify as Indigenous, and 25% of children participating in the program are living in Out of Home Care situations.

In 2017-18, 1,313 country children accessed 11,410 individual client service sessions within the Paediatric Development Program, however, demand for the service is increasing, the complexity of cases is increasing, and we now have just over 300 children on our waitlist.

Investing $4,000 in the Royal Far West Paediatric Development Program will give one more child access to a week of this gold-standard of care, removing the barriers of geographic disadvantage, and provide them with an opportunity to reach their personal potential.

Project Outcomes:

Families accessing the Paediatric Development Program will have:
• Access to clear diagnosis, a care plan, and therapeutic support for their child;
• Increased understanding of their child’s strengths and challenges;
• Access to parenting support;
• Increased knowledge and skills to support their children day-to-day.

Children participating in the Paediatric Development Program will experience, in the short term:
• Improved health / functional outcomes – speech, movement, mental health, behavior;
• Increased confidence and improved social skills;
• Enhanced school readiness and attendance levels, improved ability to participate and learn.
In the medium term, participating children can expect:
• Improved academic results;
• Improved social and familial relationships.

In the long term, we expect the above to positively impact life trajectories for participants, with:
• Improved employment prospects;
• Stronger physical and mental health;
• Reduced likelihood of delinquency, violence, substance abuse, incarceration.

Outcomes are measured through clinical patient reported outcome measures, including Goal Attainment Scaling (GAS), and the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) and / or the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ).

Every donation of $4,000 will enable one more child to move from the service waitlist, onto the pathway to care.

Budget Details

Total Budget: $4,000


Income item Price ($)
Australian Communities Foundation Grants (this application 4000


Expense item Price ($)
Health and allied health professionals, social workers, educators and support staff time to provide assessment, diagnosis care planning and therapy for a country child for one week. 4000

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