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Childminder backs campaign for more registered ‘minders

AN Enniskillen childminder has spoken out about her love of the job. 
Fiona Scallon Farrell has been a registered childminder for over 20 years and says she would encourage others to consider it as a career. 
Her call on others to consider it as a career options comes at a time when there has been a sharp decline in the number of registered childminders in the Western Trust area. 
Since 2015 there has been a 12 percent decrease in registered childminders here. 
Speaking out Fiona said, “I love childminding. I’ve been doing the job for over 23 years and every day I have a real sense of job satisfaction. 
“The interactions with the children in my care are fun. You can really see children grow, develop and learn. Childminding plays a transformative role in children’s lives. The training, checks and visits are critical to keep the children safe and it’s only what you would expect, if you were leaving your child with someone to ensure peace of mind. I would encourage others to consider childminding as a career. It is so rewarding and the flexibility it offers means you can choose how many hours you wish to work every week.”
Fiona was speaking as the North’s Childminding Association (NICMA) launched a social media campaign to reinforce the importance of parents using registered childminders to care for their children in the Western Trust area. 
The integrated communications campaign which runs until January 2020 focuses primarily on the Western Trust area. Patricia Lewsley-Mooney explained, “Over a four year period the Western Health and Social Care Trust area has seen a decline in registered childminders from 580 in March 2015 to 504 in March 2019.  This represents a decrease of 12 percent and a reduction of 456 day care places in the Trust area.
“We believe that this campaign will reinforce to parents the importance of using a registered childminder and that it may prompt unregistered childminders to get registered. By completing the relevant mandatory training, Access NI checks and getting public liability insurance in place, they will be helping to not only keep the children in their care safe, but to protect themselves.”
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The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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