6 reasons to find child care close to work

Published on Wednesday, 20 October 2021
Last updated on Monday, 18 October 2021

Article hero image

If you’re lucky enough to live near a quality child care centre that has vacancies, then it’s probably an easy decision to enrol your little one in this home away from home.

Don’t worry if you haven’t got a child care centre on your doorstep, though.

There are actually some very good reasons to choose a centre that’s closer to work than home, so let’s look at the upsides of an office-facing child care option.

1. Working near child care can ease the transition for everyone

Starting at child care is a big thing for little people, and it’s not always smooth-sailing for parents, either. It can be hard to spend the day apart after months or years together, but it’s heartening to know that you can easily drop in on your child if you work near their centre.

If you’re breastfeeding, the law ensures that you can take a break to give your bub a feed at work or child care, lunchtime cuddles are welcome at many services, and even if you can’t drop in during the busy work day, it’s comforting for your child to know that Mummy or Daddy is ‘just around the corner.’

2. Working near child care can lead to an easier commute

Whether you’re in the car or on public transport, the child care commute is a lot more straight-forward when you and your child are heading for the same part of town.

Instead of zigzagging from suburb to suburb, you can cut down on traffic jams (and fuel) with a one-stop destination, and when you’re heading for a centre close to work, the two of you get more quality time together on the longer, straighter trip.

There’s a chance to play ‘I Spy’ in the car, or read a book on the bus, and once your child arrives at their destination, they spend less time in care overall, because your travel time to and from work isn’t a big add-on.

3. Child care hours may suit you better close to work

If your job begins well before 9am, an early-opening child care centre near your employer or business will fit in better with your start time.

Child care near work is also convenient for parents with long or unpredictable hours.

If you’re held up at work with an extended meeting or urgent task, it’s good to know that you’re near your centre as closing time approaches. And if things get really desperate, there’s the option of picking your child up from care and taking them back to the office to allow you to finish things off.

4. You’re nearby if sickness or misadventure strikes

Quality educators take wonderful care of our kids, but there may be times when you have to pick up your sick or injured child as a matter of urgency, and it’s good to know that you’re just around the corner.

Quickly collecting your child from care is an important way to begin their recuperation process and prevent others from catching their germs.

5. Working nearby can make it easier to participate in child care events

All families are actively encouraged to get involved with child care life, and although the work day is busy, being close by means there’s a greater chance you can carve out some time to participate in events at your centre, without having to factor in a long trip there and back.

This might allow you to attend a special fundraiser or Mother’s Day morning tea, share in your child’s birthday cake or read the occasional book, and this kind of parental participation creates memorable moments for your under five.

It also helps you build positive relationships with your educators – though, of course, you can do this with phone calls, emails, and friendly chats at drop-off and pick-up as well.

6. Child care can open up new connections with workmates

Child care is a great way to meet parents who are at the same life stage as yourself, and if your child care centre is close to work, these parents might also be your colleagues!

Some companies have on-site child care, which brings parents from different departments together, and even if you don’t work for the same organisation, it’s possible to strike up enduring friendships with people who don’t necessarily live near you, or live like you.

It’s always good to widen your horizons and friendship circle, and child care is a great way for your child to do the same.

So, there you have it. Choosing child care near work brings positives, practically and personally, but it’s important to remember that your family should choose the child care that works for you.

You might like the idea of doing drop-off close to home, so your child has a shorter commute and you get more time to mentally prepare for work. You might prefer to meet child care friends in the area where you live. You may be thinking about changing jobs. Or you simply might not be able to get a place at the times you need, in the centre you’d like.

CareforKids.co.nz can help with your child care search, and whether you choose care that’s near home or adjoining the office, our library has lots of information about choosing great child care. Good luck!

Additional reference

Bright Horizons

Related Articles

Article image

The Work-Life Balance Tool Kit for Parents

A toolkit of tips and tricks to help parents achieve a harmonious balance between work and family life including sick days, mother guilt and child care info.

Article image

Work can be stressful - Self care 101

9 simple ways to improve self care practices and boost wellbeing in your early childhood service.

Article image

How to organise child care when you travel for work

Learn how to plan for and execute work trips when you have small children at home.