Bal­anc­ing life as a home-based carer

Taupo & Turangi Weekender - - News -

Lo­cal early learn­ing cen­tre My Tree­hut is look­ing for home­based car­ers for its Step­ping Stones pro­gramme.

Step­ping Stones pro­vides home-based care and ed­u­ca­tion for chil­dren aged three months to five years.

Kirsty Darvil, Step­ping Stones founder, says there are many par­ents in Taupo look­ing for home-based care for their chil­dren, but there aren’t enough car­ers to meet the de­mand.

“We’re on the hunt for any­one who is in­ter­ested in be­ing an ed­u­carer. If you have a pas­sion for help­ing chil­dren grow, learn, and cre­ate then please get in touch.

“You could be a stay-at-home mum look­ing for some work which fits in with your life­style, or look­ing to kick-start your ca­reer in child­care. No qual­i­fi­ca­tions are needed, just a love for chil­dren, a suit­able home en­vi­ron­ment, and a few other sim­ple checks which we’ll go through with you.”

All ed­u­car­ers are men­tored by ex­pe­ri­enced and qual­i­fied early child­hood teach­ers who check in with them and the chil­dren reg­u­larly.

Darvil says a com­mon mis­con­cep­tion is that you’re stuck home with the chil­dren all day but that’s not the case.

“The car­ers all meet up for weekly play­groups and mu­sic group. We or­gan­ise reg­u­lar ‘whole team’ ex­cur­sions too. The car­ers all stay in touch with each other and or­gan­ise play dates. It’s a re­ally sup­port­ive team and they in­ter­act with each other a lot.” Kirsty Need­ham has been an ed­u­carer for five years. She loves it so much she’s study­ing early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion next year.

Need­ham says ev­ery day is dif­fer­ent.

“Peo­ple ask me how I man­age at home with so many chil­dren but it’s hon­estly great. It’s eas­ier than you might think, all the kids set­tle into their own rou­tine and you get loads of sup­port and in­ter­ac­tion from the other car­ers. We meet up reg­u­larly to so­cialise and share ideas.

“Be­ing an ed­u­carer pro­vides a great work-life bal­ance. I love that I can spend time with my own child dur­ing the day while help­ing oth­ers learn and grown too.”

■ For more in­for­ma­tion, call 0800 STEP­PING STONES or visit www.mytree­

Ed­u­carer Kirsty Need­ham with some of her young charges at her home.

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