The Vulnerable And Navigating The New ChildCare Subsidy

[vc_row type=”full_width_background” full_screen_row_position=”middle” bg_color=”#ffffff” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” bottom_padding=”10%” overlay_strength=”1″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”10/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” delay=”100″][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1535941695884{padding-top: 4% !important;padding-right: 4% !important;padding-bottom: 4% !important;padding-left: 4% !important;}”]Six weeks into the new Child Care Subsidy changes and many families are still struggling to navigate the system. While many families are better off and this is an achievement to celebrate, there are a considerable number of families that are either worse off under the new system or do not understand how to use it. The Education Department estimates that 280,000 families will be worse off. It is to these families that extra attention and care must be given, not just in providing alternatives to the mainstream child care options but in coming alongside to help and support.

The New System

There is much to celebrate for many families. Those earning $66,958 or less receive a subsidy of 85% of their child fees (with a rate cap of $11.77 per hour). The annual cap has been removed for families earning $186,958 or less a year.

The families that are worse off under the system are so due to the new factors that determine eligibility and subsidy amount.

  • Combined family income
  • Fortnightly family activity level (work, train, study or volunteer)
  • Fees charged by the child care service

The families that are set to struggle under this new system are those that don’t meet the activity test which is a necessity for the new subsidy – where one or both parents are not working.

Vulnerability In The New System

Families where one parent is not working or unable to work will have fewer hours of subsidised care under the new system as the rate of hours received is now based on the parent with the fewest number of working or active hours.

Another concern is for casual workers and shift workers. Workers are able to estimate their future hours for a three month period but this understandably is causing casual workers to be concerned about accessing the amount of hours that they may need at short notice, and the cost of child care if they are not awarded the subsidy in time.

In order to meet the activity requirement, both parents or guardians must be either working, looking for work, volunteering, studying, training or self-employed yet this does leave vulnerable subsections of our community exposed; New immigrants with language and cultural barriers, families with a sickly parent who is unable to commit to work and others.

Liam McNicholas from Northside Community Service in Canberra has weighed in saying, “One of the big concerns we always had with this package is that the people who would be the most affected by it were the ones who could least afford to be affected by it, the ones who are already vulnerable, who are already experiencing disadvantage,”

“And those families we know from research are the families and children who most benefit from early education.”

While the Government argues the new approach to accessing the childcare subsidy will encourage families and parents to enter and re-enter the workforce, Labor believes that early childhood education is a necessity for all children and that the new structure hurts the most vulnerable.

Under the old system, families that did not meet eligibility requirements and earned $66,000 or less were able to access 24 hours of subsidised care per week. Those families will now only be entitled to access 12, 50% less.

Childcare Centre Fee Hikes

Another element that families will need to navigate under the new system is the vulnerability to childcare fee hikes. The new system dictates that the subsidy will be set at a reasonable amount, for long day care this being $11.77 an hour. If a centre decides to charge more than this, parents or guardians will have to pay the extra cost.

While the Government stated that it will be naming and shaming providers that seek to ‘exploit’ the new system, there is little parents can do in rebuttal but pay the increasing cost gap.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Children And Heart Rates

If you believe that your child is in danger, it is vital that you call 000 immediately.

It can be incredibly scary for any parent when they believe that their child has a really high heart rate. There are important factors to know when it comes to the heart, especially for children. The normal heart rates for children, other factors that could affect their heart rates, and when to be concerned, are helpful points of information that can assist you in making the best health decisions for your children.

What Is A Normal Heart Rate?

 

Doctors and studies have shown that children usually have a higher heart rate than adults. A child’s heart rate range is also wider than an adults. Doctors have found that a child’s heart rate can be as low as 60 beats per minute while they are sleeping and reach up to 220 beats per minute in the midst of focused physical activity like a soccer or AFL game.

It is important to note that athletic children will have lower resting heart rates, either in the 40 or 50 beats per minute range.

External Factors

 

When figuring out if your child has a higher than usual heart rate it is helpful to be aware of their physical and mental circumstances.

A child’s heart rate will definitely be higher if they have been at all physically active in the time before you check their heart rate. If they have been running, skipping, playing or moving at all, it would be usual to find that their heart rate is elevated.

A child’s heart rate can also be elevated if they are upset, angry or in a mood.

There are times when having an elevated heart rate makes sense. If your child is fighting a fever, getting over the flu or infection, an elevated heart rate is the body’s way of showing that it’s in fighting mode and working hard to recover.

Energy drinks can drastically drive up the heart rate and so it is important to avoid giving your child access to them.

Warning Signs

 

If you are concerned that your child is currently experiencing too high a heart rate that may lead to a more serious situation here are some signs to look out for:

  1. Shortness of breath (without having done any strenuous activity)
  2. Unable to finish physical activity that they usually do with ease
  3. Heart palpitations
  4. Extreme fatigue
  5. If you child speaks of a ‘racing’ heartbeat
  6. Skipping a beat
  7. If you child speaks of a ‘buzzing, vibrating or fluttering’ in their chest
  8. Fainting
  9. Chest Pain
  10. Skin turning pale or grey, or lips that look blue

Taking A Pulse

 

To determine if the heart rate is in the normal range you can check their pulse immediately.

Many find the easiest place to be on the neck (the carotid artery pulse):

Run your fingers halfway down the neck on either side of the throat. Press gently, you should feel a gentle throbbing, that is the pulse. Time how many pulses you feel in 30 seconds.

If you feel 45 beats in 30 seconds you can double that to know beats per minute, I.e, 90 beats per minute. This is within the normal range of a child’s heart rate, keeping in mind that children have a wide range of normal heart rates.

If you are at all still concerned it is best to take them to a GP for further tests and professional care.

How To’s For Delicious Burger Toppings Edition #1

What’s in a burger? That by any other flavour would smell as delicious…

Getting our little ones to come to the table, let alone eat can be a challenge. They would rather be off rolling, spinning, falling, throwing, doing pretty much anything rather than come sit down ‘nicely please’ and eat the delicious meal that we have so lovingly and sacrificially made. Ay Caramba, it just grinds the gears!

Well, in approaching meal times with our flair of dignity, pluck and dare we say it, shrewd intellect, we parents do have some resources up our sleeves. One of the tricks, dear brethren and madams, is to up tactility, ‘gooeyness’ and versatility. One word, BURGERS. More on that later.

To get dinner time to be a time of somewhat calm, food actually going into mouths and ‘thank you, thank you, thank you mummy/daddy for preparing such a scrumptious meal’ here are some tips for delicious meals that won’t cost the earth, all our precious minutes of freedom from the office and will go down a treat.

IT’S BURGER TIME!

First tip. Get ‘em involved. Get ‘em all up in the making, the brainstorming, the ingredients, the cooking process and then likely as not, they will be very invested in the eating process!

  1. Sweet Potato & Avocado Burger & Pepper Jack Cheese Burger

To simplify the process you can buy burger patties ready to be fried. Look out for the lean meat option to optimise on healthy options.

Go for whole wheat burger buns.

You can buy sweet potato fries ready to bake in the oven or make them straight from the source.

Preheat your oven at 180 degrees. Chop a sweet potato up into thin chips. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil over them. For a delicious burst of flavour sprinkle rosemary over. A pinch of salt over them and pop them in for 30 minutes or longer if you like them crispy. Depending on your oven you may need to tweak the specifics. But they will turn out delicious either way!

Cut up an avocado and put the slices out on a plate.

Choose an ‘exciting’ cheese. Pepper jack cheese is a great choice with a little spicy bite which lends itself to a great burger experience.

Let the family assemble their burgers, fried patties, sweet potato fries, avocado and cheese make for a new burger experience you won’t regret.

Looking for affordable childminding options?

[vc_row type=”full_width_background” full_screen_row_position=”middle” bg_color=”#ffffff” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” bottom_padding=”10%” overlay_strength=”1″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”10/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” delay=”100″][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1535942344985{padding-top: 4% !important;padding-right: 4% !important;padding-bottom: 4% !important;padding-left: 4% !important;}”]We’ve all been there. With your return to work deadline looming, the fear and anxiety, waiting to hear back if your kid has a spot or trawling the interwebs to see if anywhere, just anywhere close would be able to take your child. Sleeping at night and functioning is all but a write-off. It really shouldn’t be this hard. We live in a nation that has such a great quality of life, it is not okay that when it comes to affordable and accessible child care, Australia seems to have gone around the bend, over the cliff and is currently somewhere middair.

We are looking for parents to join us in finding a solution to the affordable childcare quest. To do this we are running a trial program for in-home care to address 3 major research areas:

  1. Affordability of childcare
  2. Effectiveness of at home care
  3. Sharing the burden of care of children

Starting soon we will be running our cohort trial program and we are looking for participants who are:

A small family with 1-2 preschool aged children between 18 months to 4 year old.

Are actively looking for or have child care options at present.

Have two (or more) friends with families in the same position.

Are willing to participate in a trial for 3 weeks at a time convenient to you.

What happens in the trial?

After you have been approved you would be guided through each step by our research support team You will be connected to like minded parents in your local area to form a “Nest”.

THE TRIAL

Once the schedule has been established you and the other “Nest” parents can follow the schedule. The research support team will supply educational models and activities to do with the children.

WE WANT YOUR FEEDBACK

Through the whole process we welcome your feedback. Let us know what works and what doesn’t. Let us know what you like and what you don’t.

Don’t hold back on telling us anything! Let us know what you want and any tweaks that you would like to see happen and we will do our best to incorporate your feedback into the app.

This trial process is an opportunity for all of us to collaborate and create a viable, safe and sustainable approach to childminding that works for everyone.

Overall we would love you to be involved in a trial that would be the benefit of thousands of young families.

Please sign up HERE[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Safety First For KidNest

[vc_row type=”full_width_background” full_screen_row_position=”middle” bg_color=”#ffffff” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” bottom_padding=”10%” overlay_strength=”1″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”10/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” delay=”100″][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1535941316298{padding-top: 4% !important;padding-right: 4% !important;padding-bottom: 4% !important;padding-left: 4% !important;}”]KidNest has sought and will continue seeking to be a viable, affordable and family-oriented alternative to the mainstream child care options available in Australia. At the heart of the program we have sought to prioritise safety, learning and fun. Through our in-built safety measures in the sign-up process for any and all families wanting to join to the in-app emergency measures, the KidNest process and app is positioned to protect and develop our children.

Safety Screening For Parents

In order to be accepted into the KidNest program and be able to access the networks to create a Nest, all adults involved must follow and pass a series of safety screening measures.

Regardless of relation to the child, parents, minder and nannies all must complete a Working With Children’s Check and Volunteer Police Check. Once an applicant has their checks finalised, the checks are to be uploaded onto their KidNest Nest Profile. Once uploaded these documents will be examined and assessed by our team and the verification process of the applicant can proceed.

House Checks

Each residents that seeks to be a Nest must also adhere to and meet the strict codes drawn up by KidNest. Once signed up on the KidNest app each applicant will be given a safety check list of how to prepare their residence to host a Nest. Photographic evidence is also required so that both KidNest and other parents in the Nest can transparently view and accept the Nest.

Open Communication

Within the app KidNest secures open communication between all the Nest adults. Encrypted (secure) texting, photographs and updates will be able to be sent at any time.

A feature within the app will also allow Nest parents to see where the parent on duty is located at any time during the day.

Nest Specifics

Each Nest and its parents will be able create comprehensive profiles for their children including any medical conditions and allergies. Within the app will be specific prompts for any services that a child may need during the day such as medication intake times.

A feature in the app will also keep track of all children present at the Nest on any given day and allow for parents to sign out upon picking up their child.

Emergency Protocol

Within the KidNest app will be means to swiftly alert the Nest parents to a concern and call for medical help. An established emergency response system is also embedded within the app.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]

4 Book Series That Will Get You And Your Little One Excited For The Bedtime Read

[vc_row type=”full_width_background” full_screen_row_position=”middle” bg_color=”#ffffff” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” bottom_padding=”10%” overlay_strength=”1″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner enable_animation=”true” animation=”fade-in-from-bottom” column_padding=”padding-3-percent” column_padding_position=”top-bottom” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”10/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” delay=”100″][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1533876379417{padding-top: 4% !important;padding-right: 4% !important;padding-bottom: 4% !important;padding-left: 4% !important;}”]Getting energetic little ones to agree to bedtime can be harder than herding a dragon into the sea for a swim. Downright traumatic sometimes, with all parties ending up in tears. Well. There may be something to be done about that. A trick to getting any little sproutling to do anything is to incentivise the action. While it is advised not to fall into bribery always, a little fun before bed can be the difference between starting on the road to bedtime routine and outright chaos. Here are some exciting books to read before bed that could get your brood scampering into their sheets, pulling up the duvet and doing the happy bed wiggle in preparation for a good story.

  1. The Chronicles Of Narnia By C.S. Lewis

Narnia has it all. Sword fights and kings, talking animals and epic quests. Importantly children are the centre of the story and your little one will likely take to the protagonists and their plight instantly. Thankfully there are 7 books in total so this series can really keep you going while you attempt to establish 7:30pm AS THE OFFICIAL BEDTIME THANK YOU VERY MUCH AND GOODNIGHT! There are breathtaking races against time, hoards of villainous villains, strong female leads and twists that give you a good spin for your money. C.S. Lewis was an academic at Oxford University and his writing is not only engaging and entertaining but rich in lessons of courage, honour love and acceptance. Narnia is a truly great read.

  1. The Secret Seven and The Famous Five By Enid Blyton

Enid Blyton was born in England in 1897 and is the world’s 6th most sold author, and it’s no wonder why. Her books have inspired generations since she was first published in the 1930s. Both book series mentioned above involve a club of boys and girls that seem to always stumble upon a mystery. Through their plucky resolve, community and perseverance they uncover all sorts of dubious schemes and bring to justice those that would seek to do ill. While the language is quaint and from a previous era, the books are engrossing reads, full of humorous dialogue, whodunnit moments and opportunities to try and figure out the twist with the clues as they unfold.

  1. Anything By Roald Dahl

A man for all generations Roald Dahl had a life that has merited it’s own countless adaptations to book and screen. From Charlie and The Chocolate Factory to George’s Marvelous Medicine, Dahl’s books are clever, witty and thought provoking. In creative and hilarious scenes he opens up discussions on greed, selfishness, responsibility and a whole host of elements that humanity can fall into. While many of his books are seen as children’s books they have so much to give every reader regardless of age, background or world view. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/12″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]