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The groundbreaking new childcare model helping parents cope with holiday juggle

Parents are taking unpaid days off to look after children during school holidays. Picture: Jake Nowakowski. Courtesy: Herald Sun

Babies could be in the boardroom under a groundbreaking new childcare model helping parents cope with the school holiday juggle.

A new provider, KidsCo Australia, has been hired by corporates such as Cotton On Group, Bega, Swisse, Wrigley and Liberty Financial to set up holiday care programs in offices on-site.

“In one year there are 50 days of school holidays, with an average working parent receiving only 20 days of paid leave,” KidsCo co-founder Adrian Rokman said.

“This means parents are forced to either take an additional 30 days of unpaid leave per year or to find adequate alternative solutions, such as expensive school holiday programs.

“What we set out to do is make things easy and convenient for working mums and dads by uniting their working life and their family life.

“Children come to work with their mum or dad and they spend the day doing fun activities run by qualified teachers.

“We work with employers to set up programs in the office, completely segregated from that of their workers, so there is no need for pick-up or drop-off, and both the kids and their parents can have the most, full-productive and fun day possible.

“Our goal would be to have every workplace run programs such as this in the holidays. It’s a no-brainer.”

Cotton On has already used the school holiday program for more than 1600 children.

“We know that school holidays can be a challenging time for staff who have responsibilities to care for children so we wanted to relieve some of that stress,” Cotton On Group CFO Michael Hardwick said.

“We love being able to offer something that makes their lives easier, and aligns with our fun and family values.”

The cost to parents could be fully covered by employers, or cost parents about $88 per child a day.