Playgroups and how to join one
Throughout Merri-bek, there are a number of playgroups that provide parents and caregivers with the opportunity to meet new people, gain support, and exchange parenting ideas. The playgroups give babies, toddlers, and preschoolers the chance to socialise as they play and learn together.
In Merri-bek, our playgroups are all about fun and friendship.
Want to join a playgroup?
Your Maternal and Child Health nurse can also let you know about new parent groups or playgroups in your area. You can find out more on our Maternal and Child Health page.
National playgroup week running from 21 to 27 March 2022. As part of this week, we are holding a free Playgroup week event on 23 March which will provide opportunities for play and to experience what playgroups have to offer you and your child.
You can find out more about this event and how to register to attend on our Parent information page.
Starting a playgroup
To start your own playgroup, all you need is a couple of friends and a place to meet.
There are many local venues that could be a great spot for a playgroup, including:
- neighbourhood houses
- community centres
- other local community groups that have space for you to use
For a small fee per family per year, membership to Playgroup Victoria entitles your playgroup to public and personal liability insurance and a range of other support services. Multicultural resources are also available.
You can find out more about starting a playgroup on the Playgroup Victoria website.
We offer a number of supported playgroup sessions that are led by experienced and trained facilitators. These sessions are free to attend and will help parents improve their child's learning and development and also build parent confidence.
We also offer SmallTalk, which is a program that runs as part of our supported playgroups. SmallTalk gives parents and carers tips and ideas on how to help their child with learning and development at home. Each week SmallTalk covers a different topic.
Are you eligible for a supported playgroup session?
To attend a free supported playgroup session, your family must have or do one of the following:
- hold a Health Care Card (from Centrelink) or equivalent visa
- identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
- be referred from Child FIRST, Child Protection or Enhanced Maternal Child Health
If you are interested in Supported Playgroup contact our Playgroup Team by calling 9240 2455.