Guide to Childcare

Single Parent’s Guide to Childcare in Perth

29 February 2024
Posted by: Chelsea

Single Parent’s Guide to Childcare: Being a parent for most people is a wonderful experience but it can also be tough.

Single Parent’s Guide to Childcare

Those challenges can sometimes be particularly hard for a single-parent family and if you’re in such a position, you may need all the help you can get – including that involving daycare. Here’s a quick guide to childcare for single parent’s –

Defining ‘single parent’ and daycare

In what follows, we’re using the term ‘single parent’ to indicate a situation where either all or the vast majority of care provision for a child (or children), is falling upon the shoulders of a single individual. That person may or may not be a biological parent and their marital or relationship status is irrelevant.

Daycare means simply having help in looking after the child during standard working hours. Typically, that’s to help the single parent’s potential for being able to work though it can also be used to provide a personal time and space break from the, at times, hard work of single-handedly providing care for the children for the parent concerned.

Your legal rights and entitlements to benefits

Much of the official help you may be able to access here will be variable depending upon your exact circumstances. For example, you may be eligible for a parenting payment designed for single parents.

However, it’s also the case that government and local government policies here are subject to fairly frequent changes meaning that anything stated here in terms of your entitlements may become rapidly out of date and therefore misleading. As a result, unfortunately, we can’t say anything detailed here other than to advise you to consult an appropriate authority to understand the financial and other benefits you might be eligible for.

A useful starting point might be the social services department in Perth through their national site. Be prepared though for potentially needing to speak to several different departments to finally get a total picture covering your family circumstances.

Daycare services

Some options for free or very low-cost help may be available through charitable organisations such as Anglicare. They are another source too for general benefits and help advice.

By and large though, as a single parent, your options for daycare assistance will usually involve chargeable services provided by one of several parties:

  • nannies;
  • private individual childminders;
  • daycare services providers (including early learning centres, nurseries, kindergartens);
  • childminders;
  • au-pairs;
  • au-pair or nanny-sharing schemes;
  • child-minding services such as creches, play centres, etc.

Unfortunately, terms such as “creche” and “play centre” aren’t necessarily universally defined or used. As a result, each of the above may offer overlapping services and exactly what they will do, when and for how much, may vary considerably. There is little option other than to review each proposition and decide how close a fit it is to your requirements, what confidence it offers you in terms of your child/children’s well-being and of course, its affordability.

Do keep in mind that you might be eligible for financial assistance with some of the above costs, subject to your situation and whether or not the provider qualifies (for example, the use of au-pairs might not).

Cutting through the haze

The position, at first glance, can appear to be confusing at best!

However, we’d be only too happy to help discuss some of these options in more detail with you. Why not call us to make an appointment for a visit and initial discussion? Simply call (08) 6189 1616 and one of our friendly team members will happily assist you. Alternatively, you can book a tour of our centre by clicking here.

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