RICE History

The Remote & Isolated Children’s Exercise Inc. ( RICE ) was established in 1976 in response to the difficulties faced by geographically isolated families with children aged up to 8 years.

The original submission for funding for RICE pointed out that in the vast northern area of South Australia the population was sparse, communication difficult, children rarely had any opportunity to mix with peers or other children of any age and there were health and welfare issues which affected children and their families.

An integrated, multidisciplinary service was seen as the most economical ways to offer the services needed and commenced operations.

Following a further report conducted in 1997 which explored the childcare needs in remote areas of South Australia the Remote and Isolated Care Initiative ( RICCI ) was implemented as a pilot program in  2000 to provide care in the home of the child for children 0 – 12 years of age, remote creches and activity days. This program was successful and now is part of the integrated programs that RICE provide.

Consequently RICE is a unique mobile children’s service offering a range of health, wellbeing, child care, early childhood education, toy and resources to the children and their families living in the remote and isolated towns, communities and stations in outback South Australia. Based in Port Augusta, the RICE multidisciplinary team covers an area of approximately 655000 square kilometres, travelling by 4wd vehicles to visit children and their families.

RICE is a community managed, not-for-profit, incorporated organisation which uses flexible delivery methods responsive to the changing and emerging needs of children and their families. It is funded by the Commonwealth Department of Education.