The following article contains information on caring for infants in Germany and Austria. Information about childcare in Switzerland can be found here.
Who cares for my toddler?
You would like to go back home and looking for a day care for your toddler? Then you have three options:
1. You organize the care of your child even with the help of relatives and friends
2. You are looking for a crèche place for your child
3. You give your child the care of a childminder
Even though one- and two-year-old children have a legal entitlement to a childcare place since August 2013, the chances of actually getting one are very different from one federal state to another. While in 2015 in Saxony-Anhalt 57.9 percent of all children under the age of three had a place in a care facility or a publicly funded daycare, in North Rhine-Westphalia there were only 25.8 percent. In the eastern German states, the average rate was 51.9 percent, in the western 28.2 percent. (Source: Federal Statistical Office)
Crib or childminder?
Whether you opt for a place in the crèche or a childminder, ultimately depends on your personal needs, desires and opportunities. Which form of care is right for your child, only you can decide. Both forms have advantages and disadvantages - think in good time and calmly about which day care best suits you and your child.
Check out nearby facilities, talk to parents who have had experience with a nursery or childminder. Our "Pros and Cons Nativity" and "Pros and Cons Nannies" can help you make a decision.
How do I find a nursery or a childminder?
Responsible for daycare are the federal states and municipalities. You can contact the respective youth welfare office at your place of residence to find out what kind of care facilities there are in your community. The Youth Welfare Office also provides information on whether and to what extent you are receiving a subsidy for the costs of childcare.
Information about accommodation with a childminder can also be obtained from the Federal Association for Day Care. At www.bvktp.de you will find the responsible for your state mothers day-care club, which helps you with the search on site.
Information about childcare in Austria, depending on your state, can be found at www.kinderbetreuung.at
Nursery places are offered by different porters. There are state, church and private institutions. Contact the church offices or organizations such as Workers' Welfare or the Joint Welfare Association to learn more about NGOs. Private providers such as the Waldorf Kindergartens are increasingly creating childcare places for children under the age of three.
Expect that the demand for childcare places is greater than the supply. If you have opted for a form of childcare, you should register your child in good time.
How much does a day nursery cost?
There are four factors that determine how much you can expect to pay for child care: your place of residence, your income, the weekly number of hours, and sometimes the form of care. It may be that a place costs the same everywhere - be it in an urban nativity scene, a childminder or a sponsored nursery by another person - but it can also be different. If you are lucky in any institution and have to resort to an unsubsidised private institution, you can sue for the additional costs due to the legal claim.
Inquire about the costs or subsidies in your state. Since child care is a matter of the countryside, there are big differences.