The Childcare Situation
While I was busy looking around for work (as I've shared in my previous post), I was also busy researching about the childcare/daycare rates here in Sydney. See, family life here is very different. Usually, the moms are allowed to take a 12-month maternity leave from work (and can even be extended up to two years). Once the moms are ready to go back to work, they would usually put their kid(s) to childcare, hire a nanny or leave them with other family members. Depending on the family's situation, putting the child to daycare is one of the common practice here.
So after tedious research, I learned that the average childcare rate here ranges from 85-150 AUD, The rate usually depends on where you are in New South Wales, how old your child is, or the other services the center offers. As expected, everything gets more expensive as you move closer to the city.
When Paolo and I moved here in Sydney, one of the main concern is Leon's care. Since we are in a working visa, we are not entitled of any childcare rebates from the government (which ranges around 30-40% from the total cost, I heard). That is why it took me awhile to decide to look for a job here. Aside from the fact that I do want to enjoy and experience being a stay-at-home mom to Leon, we also considered the childcare expenses before making a big decision.
However, Leon is growing up and it is really happening fast. Each day, I try to look for numerous ways to keep him entertained. We go to libraries, we do our groceries, and go to the playground. And every time we were out, Leon would always play with other kids. Lagi syang sabik sa ibang bata, sa kalaro. Every after our 30-minute reading and singing time in the library, he would always want for more. Palagi nya gusto ng play, ng interaction. We also want to limit his TV and gadget exposure (cause moms, kahit anong pilit kong bawasan ang TV, minsan talaga hindi ko maiwasan. Ang hirap). That's when we made our decision. It is finally time for him to experience daycare. Not just to have playmates, but actually develop his social skills, learn to interact with kids and other adults and be adjusted to the culture and the way of life here in Australia.
Luckily, there is a childcare situated just a couple of houses away from our apartment. Moreover, the rate is quite good - just 85 AUD/ day, inclusive of meals and everything else (basically half from the normal childcare costs in Sydney and still cheaper relative to the other centers around our area). Given the cost, I should then look for a job with a salary that could cover the childcare fee and have a little something extra to save.
Ang mahal no? Imagine, 85AUD (approximately Php 3,200+) a day? The rate is actually one of the cheapest, in relation to other childcare facilities. Unfortunately, even if we just want to put him there for just two to three days (just for him to experience an informal school setting and interact with kids), it would be hard for us to afford it, especially when there's only one person who is putting income in the household. Hence, another reason why I am applying for work. (If only we can easily have someone go here in Sydney to take care of Leon. Pero hindi naman ganoon kadali iyon!)
The better news? I got one. Just a part-time one - enough to cover Leon's childcare. It's just a simple job with a schedule perfect for Leon and I. Yung bang schedule na pareho kaming hindi mabibigla sa bagong "adjustment." I'll tell you more about this job that I got and my terrible separation anxiety that I am feeling on my next post.
Anyways, gotta go now! Hope you guys found this blog post a bit useful. Til next time.
Here's the video of Leon during his orientation at childcare.
Yung totoo, wala akong ginawa kundi umiyak sa kaba at saya while I was editing this video. I'm sure moms can relate.
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xx, The Mommy Roves