Rachel Amos honoured with Aunty Josie Agius Award | VIDEO

ACCOLADE: Rachel Amos, second from left, with Eyvonna, Kieshelle, Storm, Teleah and Mandy Dempsey, was honoured to receive the Aunty Josie Agius Award.
ACCOLADE: Rachel Amos, second from left, with Eyvonna, Kieshelle, Storm, Teleah and Mandy Dempsey, was honoured to receive the Aunty Josie Agius Award.

Port Augusta Children's Centre's Rachel Amos was the toast of educators after being honoured in the state's Public Education Awards on Friday night.

She was the recipient of the Aunty Josie Agius Award, reconigising her work in developing Out and About Playgroup, an outreach program dedicated to providing a transition for Aboriginal children into pre-school.

The award recognises the cultural and community expertise of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people working towards better outcomes for children and young people.

It honours Aunty Josie who worked as one of the state's first Aboriginal health workers in the 1980s.

Rachel was among 10 winners who were carefully selected from a standout list of 30 finalists who were announced in late August this year.

The Out and About Playgroup program, which started last year, has been credited with helping Aboriginal families better understand pre-school and its routines.

Rachel, who has worked at the centre since 2016, was proud of her achievement.

"We see a change in the parents as well as the children," she said.

Rachel's involvement with early learning started in Oodnadatta when she took her children to childcare in the town.

"I think I was there more than the workers," she said.

She eventually became the coordinator of the centre and later moved to Port Augusta where she enjoys her rewarding role working with local children and their parents.

The centre's director, Mandy Dempsey, spoke positively about the program's success and Rachel's work in developing it.

"Parents are feeling safer and comfortable that pre-school will suit their children," Mandy said.

"In that first year, we want give parents that confidence in kindy."

The program runs year-round during school terms.

The centre itself was a finalist in the Public Education Awards' Community Engagement Award category for its Way to Play program.

Broadcast on Umeewarra, it is a weekly radio show where families can tune in and listen to stories, sing-a-long to songs and be entertained by local guest speakers.