New daycare centre aims for 13-hour days

11:45 am on 22 November 2019

The owner of a new Auckland daycare centre which will be open for 13 hours a day, says he's doing it to meet the needs of families in his community.

Blocks at an early childhood centre

Photo: RNZ Insight/John Gerritsen

Rrahul Dosshi from the Rainbow Corner Group, says the new centre has been in the planning for two years.

He said the daycare centre would be one of a kind and include a 350 square metre soccer field, onsite catering and medical facilities.

Mr Dosshi said he was waiting on the final seal of approval from the Ministry of Education. Once he had a license, he hoped to have the centre open by the beginning of next year.

The centre is proposed to be open from 7am to 8pm.

"The reason for this also is because ... we're trying to work here with the community. The emergency services personnel, the District Health Board, shift workers, the airline crew, port workers who need that little extra support because both partners are doing shift work and the overlaps usually happen around 6pm, 7pm," Mr Dosshi said.

"So this is just to work with the community and [say] 'hey, we understand that the landscape is changing within the community. And this is to help you and work together with you, so that you don't feel stressed out'.

"What we've seen is the littlies in this day and age have a lot of allergies for a lot of reasons. So, what we've done is we've provided an onsite catering facilitate where fresh, healthy, unprocessed meals will be prepared on site.

"So the idea is again for the children to have freshly prepared healthy food every single day. And that takes the sting out of the parents' life again, where it might not be possible every single day to prepare healthy meals in the morning, at the end of the school, look after chores and then work and so on, so forth."

Having a medical centre on site would also provide background services to help out families, Mr Dosshi said.

"What I'm saying is we're part of the community. It's a whole village approach to bring a child up is what we're focusing on."