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What are Child Development Services?

Our services help infants, children, youth, and families by encouraging maternal, infant, and child health. We give children the best start in life by identifying support needs early. Our team also provides specialized services to help children diagnosed with a developmental disability, and their families. Our Child Development Services are available to families in the Districts of Muskoka and Parry Sound. 

Group of preschoolers reading a book

What services and supports can I access? 

Great Beginnings

Great Beginnings programs support pregnant women and parents of young children aged 0-3 years. We offer opportunities for play, resource sharing, and parenting strategies. This service is available to families in the Muskoka and Parry Sound Districts. 

We are currently offering many of our Great Beginnings services online. Our online supports include: 

  • Interactive groups: Our groups provide social connection and support for pregnant women and new parents. Groups are offered Tuesday mornings in Muskoka and Thursday afternoons in Parry Sound.
  • Education sessions: Learn about topics of interest to pregnant women and new parents, delivered by community professionals. Sessions run each Tuesday at 1:00 pm.
  • Virtual community kitchens. Learn about healthy eating, pre and post-natal nutrition, and more while trying out a nutritious recipe. Participants will receive a meal kit or food voucher and a link to a pre-recorded cooking demonstration. 
  • Closed Facebook groups to share information and resources.
  • Special events throughout the year. View our calendar to see what’s coming up.

Call us at 1-800-668-8555 ext. 3212 or email greatbeginnings@handstfhn.ca to register for Great Beginnings or to learn more. You can also explore our calendar of events  or find us on Facebook.

Developmental Services for Children

We work with children and youth under 18 years who have a developmental disability. Our goal is to reduce challenging behaviours while also teaching skills and strategies to ensure success. We work together with parents/caregivers, the child/youth, and community support teams. 

We can help by:

  • Identifying a specific behaviour or skill to work on
  • Using the principles of Applied Behavioural Analysis to monitor and evaluate behaviour 
  • Creating an individualized behaviour intervention plan
  • Helping caregivers learn new ways to support positive behaviour
  • Providing service in flexible settings, including home, school, or the community
  • Educating caregivers on topics related to children with developmental delays and behaviour

We are here to help. To get started, contact us or complete our online referral form

Infant and Child Development

Infant and Child Development services will make sure you are informed, supported, and connected to the help you need for your child. 

We assess each child individually and create a targeted plan to support developmental progress. We coach parents and caregivers on how to embed developmentally supportive activities into daily routines. We also discuss how parent-child interactions can help optimize child development. 

To get started, contact us or complete our online referral form


How can I get started?

Learn more about our Child Development programs by contacting us. You can also visit our resources page for more information.