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Scottish Child Minding Association
Caithness & Sutherland - Newsletters
Winter 2005

Quality childminding …. building confident children within a
family childcare experience.

Fiona Carter, Caithness and Sutherland Development Officer
50 Seaforth Avenue
Tel: 01955 606931
Fax: 01955 606931
Email: fiona.carter@childminding.org

Winter 2005-Introduction
Free Milk for Under 5’s
Pre Registration Training
Application for Funding
Scheme of Excellence
‘Goodbye’, Small Grant Scheme, ‘Hello’, Awards For All
Childcare Vouchers
Xmas Party!!!
Scottish Childminding Association AGM
Inserts in Newsletter
Something for the Kids—’Moodonna’ colour-in

Hello and welcome to the Winter edition of our very own newsletter, full of interesting news and helpful advice for the busy childminder in Caithness and Sutherland. Hope you all had a lovely summer and managed to take advantage of the sunshine when it came out! Things have been very busy here and there’s a lot to tell you about. I’m always pleased to hear from you and would be delighted if any of you have any ideas for items or information that you would like included in your newsletter. This could be an idea for a regular feature or simply a one off piece of information or event. All ideas are gratefully received.


The Health Department’s Welfare Food Scheme enables children under the age of 5 to receive, free of charge, 189ml (one third of a pint) of milk for each day they attend approved day care facilities for two hours or more. Babies aged under one may instead receive infant formula milk (dried baby milk) made up to 189mls. Registered childminders are entitled to apply for this and can be reimbursed for the cost of the milk they supply to children as stated above. Please note however, child care provided for less than two hours per day does not qualify for approval under the Scheme.
To claim, you must first be approved by WFRU before you can receive payment for the milk that you supply. Contact WFRU (Welfare Food Reimbursement Unit) on Tel: 020 7887 1212 or Fax: 020 7887 1258 to receive an application form and complete and return this form promptly. Reimbursement will not be made for any milk provided before the date of approval, so it’s in your interests to apply and be approved as soon as possible. In keeping with the milk theme, I have attached a picture of Moodonna the cow, for the little ones to colour in, just for fun.

Due to demand, we’re running a new preparation training course in Thurso over October and November. This has been provisionally booked and is due to begin on October 24th at The Park Hotel. Dates and times are listed below:
Monday 24 October
Monday 31 October
Monday 7 November
Monday 14 November
Monday 21 November
Monday 28 November
All sessions will take place from 7pm – 10pm and will be tutored by Hilary Herrick. We hope to see as many as possible attending.

Other Training
The Caithness Childcare Family Resource Partnership are currently organising training for the following:
Positive Behaviour Management
Allows participants the opportunity to look at:
• Motivations behind particular behaviours
• How we respond to such behaviour
• Consider positive versus negative reinforcement
• Look at and discuss a specific behavioural problem
• Established strategies for dealing with challenging behaviour
And much more………………..
Tues 6th Dec 6.30pm – 9.00pm
Wick (venue to be decided):
First Aid Dates & times to be decided
Food Hygiene Dates & times to be decided
If you wish further details or are interested in taking part, please contact me via the contact details given, and I will forward your name on to the relevant parties.

ADVENTURES IN FOODLAND was developed by the Health Education Board for Scotland (HEBS) in partnership with several other organisation, and is a resource giving information on why it is important to promote healthy eating, oral health and physical activity in young children.  It makes suggestions for healthy meals and snacks for toddlers and pre-school children and has activity sheets with a range of recipes, activities and ideas to share with them. If you would like a pack, contact Margaret Pettigrew on 0131 536 5544 who should be able to help.
‘Adventures in Foodland’ training has been organised for:
Wednesday 7th December from 10am – 11.30am
Thurso – venue to be confirmed.
It will be a morning of having fun with food and getting your hands dirty, whilst also learning about healthy eating and how you can make food fun for children.
The workshop will be presented by myself, so anyone who is interested in coming along and joining in the fun, please contact me as soon as possible, so that I can confirm numbers and venue.

I would like to remind you all that financial assistance may be available to you from the Childcare Partnership. You can access up to £350 every 3 years for many different purposes. For example, if the Care Commission make recommendations of alterations to your home, if you need to update your stock of toys and play equipment, or if you need to purchase safety equipment, then it’s worthwhile finding out whether funding is available. To get advice about this, contact Lindsay Gunn on Tel: 01955 605040 who will be able to answer all your questions.  There is also the possibility of funding being made available to childminders who have been recommended by the Care Commission to install fire safety equipment. The fine detail of what will be available has yet to be decided, but I will keep you notified of the final decision.

Awards For All
Highlander House
58 Waterloo Street
G2 7DB
0141 242 1200
E-mail: scotland@awardsforall.org.uk
website: www.awardsforall.org.uk
Good luck with your applications and let us know if you are successful and we will feature you in our newsletter and magazine.

For any childminders who have been offered childcare vouchers as payment for their childminding service, I have found out a little bit about them for you.

  • Childcare vouchers are offered by employers to their staff, usually as part of a flexible benefits package

  • They save the employee money on their childcare costs due to their Tax and National Insurance savings.

  • Childcare vouchers can be used as full or part payment for a wide range of childcare options, including registered childminders.

  • They can be used to pay for the care of children up to the age of 15.

  • They are available in both paper and electronic format.

  • Any childminder who agrees to accept payment by childcare vouchers will be sent out a Carer Pack, which explains how the scheme works and contains everything you need to enrol and operate the scheme.  Payments are made directly into your bank account (or by cheque if you prefer this).
    For further information, visit Accor Childcare Vouchers website:

Thurso childminders plan to hold a Christmas Party at the Free Church (across the road from Thurso swimming pool) on Tuesday 13th December from 10am – 12 noon.
We hope to have a bouncy castle and a selection of toys for the children to play with, and would love for as many of you as possible to come along and join in the fun. We also hope that Santa might pop in, if he’s not too busy getting ready to deliver his presents to all the good boys and girls in Caithness.
We will hold our usual get-together on Tuesday 8th November at 10am at the Free Church, where we will discuss arrangements and consider any ideas you may have.  Please come along, as we always love to see new faces.

Here’s a word from Janet Russell, an Inverness childminder and Highland Elected Member, about our recent Annual General Meeting:
“The Annual AGM & Conference was held on Saturday 8th October in Paisley. Well, it actually started off on the Friday night with a disco, which was great fun. The AGM was very straightforward this year & the resolution to change the membership categories was almost unanimously accepted. So, when you renew your membership the first letter on your membership number will probably change. Although this removes the ‘group’ member’ category of the SCMA, the SCMA are still keen to promote & support the local groups that meet throughout Scotland.

After the AGM official business, there was a chance to get information / purchases from various stalls such as SCMA, Care Commission, Ethnic Dolls, outdoor play, & toy stalls. Then, there was a selection of workshops to choose from such as Birth to 3, Holistic Play & SCMA Marketing Me. It is a great way to get some fresh ideas, meet with other childminders & SCMA staff from throughout Scotland, & get first hand information on what is happening in Childcare in Scotland. Although admittedly still ‘work related’, I still feel as if I’ve had 24 hours off to myself & that doesn’t happen very often. Why not put next years AGM & Conference in your diary? There is a social on Friday 6th October & then Saturday 7th October is the AGM. And to make it really easy for you to join in, it’s at the Newton Hotel in Nairn!”
Janet Russell – Highland Elected Member