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What, Why, How


The Early Language and Literacy (EL&L) Taree Project is an early years education program, incorporating speech and language pathology principles, designed to optimize the language and literacy outcomes of Indigenous children from Taree and surrounding townships.


Many communities across the Manning Valley experience significant disadvantage including high levels of disengagement from education, poor home literacy practices and high-transgenerational illiteracy. There is also a high proportion of First Nations families in the area. Children in this region are more than twice as likely to be ‘Developmentally Vulnerable’ in language and cognitive skills (such as basic literacy) upon school entry compared to the state average (AEDC, 2021).


The EL&L Taree Project provides community members with the skills required to meet the language and literacy challenges including qualifications (Cert IV course), skill-building workshops, resource provision and ongoing mentoring for participants and participating sites (i.e., community preschools). The training and ongoing support empowers communities, educators, parents and carers with effective techniques and learning resources to teach their own children the foundational language and literacy skills required for success at school and in later life.

Early Language & Literacy Taree Project Impact

The importance of addressing the pre-literacy learning needs of disadvantaged children is supported by international and domestic evidence, which indicates that strong pre-literacy skills are vital for success in reading development and educational engagement. Similar research identifies that a disparity exists upon school entry in the early language and literacy experiences between children raised in higher and lower socioeconomic conditions.

The Greater Charitable Foundation's support of the Early Language and Literacy program from 2019-2022 enabled ALNF to establish the program at eight new sites within the Taree region. This provided training, support and mentoring to 105 learners, with 20 participants awarded Certificate IVs in the program and others continuing with ALNF mentoring to embed strategies into their practice. The new 2023 partnership will enable ALNF to expand their support to offer the program to at least 40 educators working across 15 learning sites in Taree and the nearby towns of Old Bar, Nabiac and Coolongolook. Over three years, ALNF will deliver targeted, evidence-based training and resources to educators, parents, carers and other interested community members aiming to equip local adults to support the foundational language and literacy development of more than 500 children.

Program testimonial

"To achieve sustainable outcomes, ALNF adopts a place-based, community strengthening framework in its approach to service delivery. We do this by engaging with preschool, school, service providers, families and other relevant stakeholders to implement evidence-based, culturally appropriate practices for children’s early language and literacy development."

Improving Life Outcomes

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