If you know you are returning to work after your maternity leave, it’s advised that you start looking for your babies childcare placement whilst you’re actually still pregnant! The earlier the better as childcare providers get booked up fast.
It’s a weird concept looking for a childcare placement for a child you haven’t actually met yet, placing them in a setting where you don’t know their likes, dislikes and personality yet can be really overwhelming.
It’s also hard to know where to start when you’re new to Mum Life. You haven’t yet made a host of friends to ask for recommendations and you haven’t started going to playgroups where you’ll see and meet childminders that take children on days out.
Before my maternity leave with Rory, I had absolutely no idea where to start when it came to childcare but after a quick Google, I found Childcare.co.uk and all of my prayers were answered.
What is Childcare.co.uk?
Its basically the online dating version of childcare providers. You just filter by the types of childcare you are looking for and which area you need them to be in. This is particularly amazing if you don’t work in the same place that you live or if you are planning on moving and don’t know about the childcare options in your new area-to-be.
Once you hit “search” you are met with tonnes of childcare providers profiles and everything you need to know about them. I was offered 45 childminders in a 5-mile radius to my home. We live in a small town so I was really surprised at how many there actually are local to us.
There were also 108 childcare services offered which includes tutors, nannies, childminders, doulas and so much more!
A childcare providers profile will reveal the following about them at a quick glance:
- Their certificates & qualifications
- Whether their Ofstead registered
- Whether they’re DBS checked
(Childcare Providers can also upload this documentation for you to check it from the offset)
- If they own a car and what license they hold
- Whether they have Newborn Experience
- Whether they do School pickups and also which school
As part of their profile, the childcare provider can give some information about themselves, their availability as well as some information about their setting which I really liked.
The best part for me was that it has the facility for users to review childminders. It’s really hard to whittle down which childminder is going to suit the way you parent and raise children but for me, the reviews gave me a real sense of the childminders teaching and nurturing style which is invaluable when you’re trying to find someone when you are feeling a little daunted.
Childcare.co.uk currently has 2million active users and I can absolutely see why. The site is ridiculously easy to use and super easy to quickly find carers. It’s completely free to use. I’d completely recommend it.
Childcare.co.uk helped me find my first childcare provider who we adored, she looked after Rory from 6 months to 18 moths where I then I had Elin so decided I didn’t need childcare whilst on maternity leave. When I returned to work I went back to Childcare.co.uk as my first childminder was now fully booked. I found my now childminder on there who I absolutely obsessed with! She has enriched my children’s life so much and I am so greatful to her and Childcare.co.uk for helping me to find her!
*This is a collab post