Indigenous Parenting and Family Research

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are among the most disadvantaged in Australian society, with Indigenous children significantly more vulnerable to a range of adverse life outcomes stemming from this disadvantage.  Parenting skills and a variety of family risk factors are influenced by the effects of disadvantage, meaning that Indigenous children are more likely to miss out on the crucial early childhood development opportunities that are required for positive social, educational, health and employment outcomes later in life. The Indigenous Parenting and Family research team works to discover the most effective ways to help Indigenous parents, children and families get the best start in the early years, promoting positive developmental health outcomes.


Let's Start: Parent - Child Program

Team Leader: Associate Professor Gary Robinson
Project start/finish dates: 2009 - 2013
For more information, please contact: 

About the Let’s Start Program
Let's Start family interactionThe Let’s Start Parent-Child Program is a therapeutic parenting program that helps support the social and emotional needs of children as they begin the transition to school. Let’s Start is the only program of its kind for Aboriginal children and families which has been evaluated and demonstrated to work.

Let’s Start brings together expertise about child development, early learning, and parenting to support the emotional wellbeing of parents and children at this important time. The program works with local organisations like schools, preschools, health care centres, childcare centres, and child protection services to ensure that parents are supported in their local communities.

Let’s Start has evolved over 10 years of working with Aboriginal children and families in both remote and urban settings.  It is respectful of kinship, culture, and Aboriginal family values, and great care is taken to adapt Let’s Start to meet local needs.

Where are we now?
Since 2006 Let’s Start has successfully delivered programs to families across a range of remote and urban NT communities. The program was initially developed and delivered on the Tiwi Islands and continues to be delivered in all communities on the islands. 

It has now been expanded to four communities in the Victoria-Daly Rivers Shire (Nauiyu Nambiyu, Nganmarriyanga, Nganambala and Peppimenarti). Teachers and other service providers with concerns about a parent or child can make a referral to the
program, either in Darwin or through a local Let’s Start Community Coordinator.

Let’s Start works to assist Indigenous children and their families in regional and remote settings to enjoy healthy and fulfilling lives.


More Information