McKenzie Centre - Realising a child's potential - Early intervention for children with special needs - Te Whare Awhina o nga Kohungahunga Haua




At the Centre we use a transdisciplinary approach to intervention. In this approach the family is on the team and involved at every stage. Every family has a key worker.


Who Can Refer?

Referrals are accepted directly from families/whanau and can be made by phone or in writing. 

 Referrals are taken from within a 50km radius from McKenzie Centre. 

Agencies that commonly refer to our service include: Child Development Centre, General Practitioners, Paediatricians, Plunket, and special education services. Parental knowledge of and permission for the referral is essential.


 Who Attends the Centre?

Children from birth, or at diagnosis, to school age who have delays in their  development or are at risk of developing delays.  This could include children with intellectual, physical, communication and/or sensory disabilities, as well as those children with delays although no specific disability can be identified.



Early intervention– the use of deliberate strategies during the first years of life, to promote the optimal development and functioning of the child with special needs and also that of his/her family/whanau. If a child experiences a developmental delay this can compound over time. The principle of early intervention is to provide therapy for children with special needs to minimise these delays and to maximise their chances of reaching typical milestones in development. 

Special Needs – means anything to do with a child's development which is causing parents or other people concern. This may be short or long term. Examples of a special need could include: children who are slower than others of their own age to do things like sitting, walking, talking or playing; or specific disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy and syndromes; or children at risk of developing delays e.g. premature babies.



The team employed at McKenzie Centre include:   

Office Coordinator

Administration Support 

Business Manager 

Centre Director 

Assistive Technology Specialist 

Early Intervention Teachers 

Occupational Therapists 



Social Worker 

Speech Language Therapists 

Education Support Workers


In 2010 McKenzie Centre was a finalist in the Westpac Waikato Business Excellence Awards for businesses that employ 6 to 15 Full Time Equivalent  staff.

In 2011 McKenzie Centre was short listed in not only the  Westpac  Waikato  Business Excellence Awards but also the Leadership Award as well.