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The Home Interaction Program for Parents and Youngsters (HIPPY) is a two-year home-based parenting and early childhood enrichment program targeting families with young children. Families start HIPPY when their child is in the year before school (usually around 4 years old) and continue into the second year of HIPPY during their first year of formal schooling. The HIPPY approach develops the foundations for learning in the home during children’s crucial early years. HIPPY fosters social inclusion, contributes to successful school participation and offers parents, a supported pathway to employment and local level community leadership.

HIPPY’s attention to the interactions between children and their parents and its emphasis on supporting early literacy development is consistent with key policy initiatives across Australia and reflects contemporary understanding of the crucial role of parents in their child’s learning.

HIPPY seeks to build a sense of belonging for families and children and actively equip parents to support their children and other parents. HIPPY has grown from strength to strength with the support of the Brotherhood of St Laurence.

HIPPY is informed by an evidence base that indicates that children’s earliest and most powerful learnings come from their family and that early learning experiences that encourage literacy and numeracy equip children for lifelong learning.

The HIPPY Mission

HIPPY is dedicated to: 

  • Increasing the chances of positive early school experience among children and parents 
  • Empowering parents to understand their crucial role in developing their child’s readiness to learn 
  • Providing children with stimulating and varied learning opportunities 
  • Enhancing interaction between parents and their children 
  • Engaging parents and children in the joy of learning 
  • Creating a learning environment in the home that encourages the development of literacy skills
  • Reducing the social isolation of parents 
  • Fostering parental involvement in school and community life
  • Providing parents with the opportunity of becoming home tutors in their own community
  • Supporting home tutors to develop the skills and work experience needed to compete successfully in the labour market