KYABRAM’S new out-of-school-hours care centre is set to open this month.
The Loop is the brainchild of mother Claire Bassett, who decided to go out on a limb and start up her own centre to cater for busy parents.
The centre offers before-school care, after-school care as well as holiday programs to keep children entertained.
The inside of the St Augustine’s parish centre is almost unrecognisable, with every nook and cranny jam packed full of activities to keep growing minds busy.
From a music area, kitchen, arts and crafts area to a quiet reading spot, it’s not likely you’ll see a bored child in sight.
And it started with a small idea.
“I was sitting in the office waiting for my daughter to get out of sick bay and I heard another parent ask if the school had after-school care, which they didn’t,” owner Claire said.
“So I began talking with St Augustine’s and it just went from there. We had the opportunity to move it into the school but I thought that’s not what kids want.
“As soon as I saw the convent I knew it could work – kids want to get out of the classroom and so I decided to start there.”
From there, Claire spent the summer holidays renovating the building and decorating the different areas.
There was one thing left – the name.
“I wanted something which connected kids’ home and school life as well as life in general so we came up with the Loop,” she said.
“It’s catchy and then there’s the whole aspect where people are asking ‘are you in the Loop?’”
With 60 places available, families from Kyabram and district are welcome to become part of the Loop. Whether it’s all week or just a day, Claire said there is a solution for every family.
“Not everyone wants five-day-a-week care for their kids, so we may have the 60 spots however we’re actually serving more than 300 families in the area,” she said. “The idea is that kids will treat this like their home – it’s all about autonomy. If they want something from the fridge then they can go get it, if they make a mess, they clean it up.
“It’s important for the kids not to feel like they’re being lectured or mothered, they learn by doing.’’
The Loop Out-Of-Hours School Care is holding its open day on January 14 from 10am at 65 Church St, Kyabram.
To stay in the loop head to The Loop OOSH Facebook page or call Claire on 0405147867.