News & Events

Mums and kids have fun together

August 6, 2021

Mums are making the most of getting active with their children thanks to a VicHealth grant.

A recent trip to a play centre saw mums going inside tunnels, down slides, across bridges and steps.

Jessica, Emerge’s Manager of Integrated Family Services, said: “The change in the women is remarkable. They have gone from cautiously overseeing their children from a distance to joining in and having fun. It is what we had hoped to see and fantastic that we have been able to offer them safe spaces to become more confident.”

The impact on children watching their mums become active has been extraordinary too, according to Jess.

“We can see how some of the children start the day very shy and staying near their mothers, but gradually they smile and join, and be a child – having fun.”

The $14,800 Reimagining Health grant comes as new data reveals how the second coronavirus wave indirectly affected the health and wellbeing of Victorians.

A survey of 2,000 Victorians shows many struggled to connect socially and to be physically active. On a positive note, many wanted to be more involved with their community once the pandemic eased. The data showed that during the second wave:

  • 1 in 3 Victorians were worried about their loss of social connection, with 2 in 5 finding it hard or very hard to stay connected to friends and family
  • 3 in 4 who attended fitness classes stopped attending, while 3 in 5 who attended arts groups also stopped going along
  • 1 in 2 school-aged kids were less active
  • However, more than 1 in 2 wanted to get involved in a community group or club once restrictions eased, and;
  • 1 in 5 ate more veggies, for most it was because they were cooking more.

From Emerge’s perspective the VicHealth grant is certainly working well.

“Mums are developing a sense of belonging and friendships with peers who have had a similar experience, which is healing in itself,” Jess said.

“It also helps to break the isolation that most of the women have suffered.

The VicHealth grant has supported weekly exercise and movement outdoors with mothers and children staying in the Emerge refuge. Activities have varied weekly and have included dance, soccer drills and ‘one minute to win’ challenges


The two lockdowns this year temporarily halted the program but plans are already underway to ensure the activity stays in further lockdowns as the activities are outside


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