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If you are concerned about your baby, toddler, or pre-schooler’s learning or development, help is available. These services are government funded and free.

Child development services

Child development services provide assessments and organise services for children who have an intellectual, sensory or physical disability (or a combination of these).

They may help you and your child access Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People funded disability support services, such as equipment or house/vehicle modifications.

Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand offers child development services. Talk to your health provider or contact Te Whatu Ora for more information.

Learn more about disability support services (external link)

Early learning support services

The Ministry of Education provides services for young children who need support with learning and development.

Early intervention services

Early intervention services work with young children from birth up until they start school. They can help you work out what your child needs and organise services and support for your family/whānau.

Incredible Years parent programme

Special support is available for families and whānau of young children who:

  • are 3 to 8 years and have behaviour difficulties, or
  • are 2 to 5 years and have autism.

The Incredible Years Programme is 14-session course where you can meet other parents, share ideas and gain practical skills to help your child. For example, how to:

  • play and spend time together
  • set limits
  • reduce challenging behaviours
  • help your child solve problems.

Learn more about the Incredible Years Programme on the Ministry of Education website (external link)

Help for children who are deaf or hard of hearing

The Ministry of Education have specialist advisors who work with parents and caregivers of children who are deaf or hard of hearing. They can:

  • provide advice, information and encouragement
  • connect you with hearing professionals
  • put you in touch with the Deaf community to learn about New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL).

Learn more about early learning support services on the Ministry of Education website (external link)

Last updated on Wednesday, 1 February 2023

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