Childcare - what are the options?
Laura Vida interviews Sarah Warburton, founder of TrioCare, an Edinburgh-based childcare agency.
For families unsure about childcare options, Sarah Warburton provides expert, tailored advice. And whether you need long-term, short-term (or even last-minute) help, she’s got you covered.
What led you to found TrioCare in 2016?
I grew up with 3 brothers and I’ve always enjoyed working with children. Name any role — crèche volunteer, babysitter, nanny, nursery practitioner etc. — I’ve probably done it! After having my twins, I wanted to do something that was compatible with motherhood. Thus TrioCare was born!
Aside from the fact that I have 3 children, I see the logo (3 triangles) as representing parents, children and my staff (the agency). The triangle is the strongest shape and I value strong bonds between individuals. I’m not a believer in hierarchy; for me, communication is key.
What are the advantages to parents in using an agency?
They can feel secure in the knowledge that all staff have been throughly vetted via background checks, interviews and reference taking. CPD is also given, meaning that employees are trained in Paediatric First Aid, Food Hygiene, Infection Control etc. in line with current legislation.
Can you provide emergency childcare solutions?
Yes. We can be contacted any day of the week, from morning (6.30/8am) to night (7.30/8pm). Our staff frequently provide last-minute cover for families, nurseries and schools. We can also step in at unusual times e.g. supporting a new mother and her baby through the night.
Do you only look after children in their homes?
No. We also look after children in hotels and at different venues/events. It can give parents peace of mind to know that their children are on site.
We also provide supply staff for nurseries and After School Clubs in schools across Edinburgh.
How do you recruit staff?
Occasionally we advertise, but we have our own bank of nannies etc. For us, word-of-mouth is key: a lot of nannies know each other in Edinburgh through toddler groups etc. Through our links with nurseries, we also hear of nursery practitioners who want to nanny and are ideally qualified to do so.
What are the most common misconceptions regarding childcare?
Many see a nanny as an expensive luxury, not a necessity. But if you have 2 or more children, a nanny can make sense logically and economically. Aside from the cost of a nursery, he/she can be relied on when a child is ill. What’s more, a good nanny (like ours) feels like one of the family: they will muck in with general household tasks when the children are otherwise engaged.
Childminders work exclusively in their own homes. They can be a cost-effective alternative to a nanny if you only have one child; or if only one of your two children is at school, but needs childcare afterwards.
For more information: www.triocare.co.uk