The B4 Community Storyteller Grants have been created to help share the message across Tasmania about the importance of the early years.
The first grants were released in 2021 and have since supported 16 communities, see below, share the B4 key messages and the importance of the early years through becoming skilled community storytellers.
Storytellers ran events, shared stories and created a range of resources for their community focusing on the early years story and the key elements required for children to thrive.
2022 B4 Community Storyteller funding recipients:
- Beaconsfield House Inc,
- Fingal Valley Neighbourhood House Inc,
- Parakaleo Ministries Inc,
- The Link Youth Health Service,
- The Shepherd Centre – for Deaf Children,
2021 B4 Community Storyteller funding recipients:
- Burnie Community House,
- Door of Hope Christian Church,
- Early Support for Parents,
- Friends of Zafira,
- Goodstart Blackmans Bay,
- Kingborough Council,
- Lady Gowrie Tasmania,
- Mission Australia,
- Poss M’Agic, and
- Warrane Mornington Neighbourhood Centre
The following links provide access to a range of resources and activities developed through the Grant Funding project to support everyone share the importance of the early years in their communities:
Little Tassie Devils
B4 First 1000 Days Storyteller Grant recipient Choose Life Services (AKA Parakaleo Ministries Inc) in partnership with the East Devonport Child and Family Learning Centre and Creative Therapies Tasmania have written, recorded and documented four songs and a book representing their stories of the first 1000 days.
The aim of the project was to raise awareness of the importance of the first 1000 days, being that period from pregnancy to 2 years of age, as a critical period of development and the actions that can be taken to help children in the first 1000 days thrive and grow now and for the future: using music and songwriting!
The songs reinforce the key first 1000 days messages and are an outstanding example of place based, collective action. The songs and their lyrics are relevant to all parents and will be an invaluable resource not only for the East Devonport community, but across Tasmania.
FIND OUT WHERE YOU FIT IN THE FIRST 1000 DAYS – Poster
In 2021 Building Blocks was funded by the Tasmania Government B4 Early Years Coalition to develop a project to tell the stories of families and children in NE Tasmania. Our aim was to empower everyone to do their part in supporting all children to grow and thrive. NE Community Champions for Children offered us all an opportunity to build a more inclusive community.
Building Blocks - 6 Key Message Videoshttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1siE951vP5Tc2Vey4rcAoQ
The B4 key messages that we had in mind when exploring our storytelling events so that we can support children in their early years learning journey.
B4 Community Champions
B4 has invested in training skilled trusted community members, building a network of trained B4 Community Story Tellers who in turn deliver “B4 Community Story Tellers Training” using the “Facilitators’ Handbook for Training Community Early Years Story Tellers”, to key community members in their communities. These local community members become the B4 Community Storytellers.
As Community Champions are trained they will be added to the list for contact by communities who are seeking community members to be trained as B4 Community Story Tellers.
Current B4 Community Champions
Annette Fuller Southern
Courtney Hobbs Northern
Jeannine Otto Southern
Suzanne Purdon Southern
Di Nailon Northern
Simon Hammond Northern
Melinda Thomas Southern
Carolyn George Southern
Dorothy Roberts Northern
Caroline Bastick Northern
Tanya Greenwood Northern
Timiliy Bruce-Green Southern
To contact a Community Champion please email B4 Support team email@example.com
Or phone (03) 616 55666.
The Impact of Storytelling
Listen to three B4 Community Champion Storytellers, and hear how storytelling has changed the way they are sharing the key B4 messages about the importance of the early years especially the first 1000 days:
Tanya – Building Blocks Fingal Valley Neighbourhood Centre. How the power of a personal story has ensured the safety of a children’s play space by the local Council.
Timily – Connected Beginning kutalayna Collective. The power of personal stories to help a mum feel she is not alone.
Mel and Kylie -Burnie CFLC. The power of stories to share strong information about the early years and helping others find their powerful stories
Building Blocks Fingal Valley Neighbourhood Centre
How the power of a personal story has ensured the safety of a children’s play space by the local Council.
Connected Beginnings kutalayna Collective
The power of personal stories to help a mum feel she is not alone.
Mel and Kylie -Burnie CFLC
The power of stories to share strong information about the early years and helping others find their powerful stories.
History of the B4 Community Story Tellers Project
“there is a known and worrying gap between the expert and public understanding of the early years development in Australia,”
Kendall-Taylor, L. Lindland, E. (2013). P.13. Modernity, Morals and More Information: Mapping the Gaps Between Expert and Public Understanding of Early Child Development in Australia. Frameworks Institute.
The B4 Community Story Tellers Project was designed as a bridge to across this knowledge gap. Working from a relational base it acknowledges the effectiveness of a skilled, peer-to-peer transfer of early years knowledge through storytelling – the peers being natural community story tellers or leaders, not necessarily early years professionals.
“…the fastest way to increase community understanding of the importance of the early years and change behaviours is to upskill specific people within communities that are trusted and more likely to be able to influence other community members, with storytelling skills and knowledge of the importance of the early years.”
B4 initially piloted the program in 2019 across four communities, to test the effectiveness of the model. The pilot was highly successful in its aims to increase participants’ ability to have early year’s conversations. Building from these findings the 2021 B4 Community Storyteller Grants where undertaken.