The KindiCare Excellence Awards celebrate the top performing early childhood education and care centres right across Australia.
2022 Award Winners
Australian Capital Territory Winner
Forrest Out Of School Hours Care
KindiCare●August 29th, 2022
Forrest Out Of School Hours Care (FOOSHC), provides outstanding education and care to school-aged children. Equal territory winner in the ACT, this service achieved a KindiCare rating of 9.5 and holds an Excellent Rating from ACECQA.
FOOSHC is a not-for-profit community-based service operated by a volunteer Parent and Community Management Committee. The management committee employs more than 40 staff to operate the service and an executive director to manage the business. Up to 150 children attend the service daily, which is co-located on the grounds of Forrest Primary School in the ACT. Executive director Ali Sewter says at FOOSHC they believe children are competent, capable learners and have a right to choose their play. “We are a child lead play-based program specialising in Risk and Play. Allowing children to lead and explore their world and learn how to manage and mitigate risk so they can explore their world safely. Ali said FOOSHC also has a playwork practice, which is led by the children who attend. “Child-led doesn’t mean, ‘let the children do whatever they want!’ It means set safe boundaries, acknowledge their needs, respect and value their opinions, share their joy, be excited in their interests, help them to manage and mitigate risks so they can make informed choices and empower them to be active participants in their community.” The philosophy of playwork empowers children to take risks and lead and control their own play and Ali said staff receive specialised training in this approach. “Everything we do is in the best interests of the child. We honour and respect their rights, views, and ‘being’ throughout our program and believe that they are integral to our world.” Ali says the success of the service, which has received the highest possible Excellent Rating from ACECQA, twice, comes down to the quality of the relationships between educators, children and families. “Relationships are paramount to us. We spend the time and energy investing in our relationships with the children and their families.” “We build secure attachments with the children, so they develop trust and understanding of their world.” “The two values which guide our services are Respect and Kindness.”