As you enter the hallway, you are met by an array of colourful toys and charts under the veranda and the beautiful smiles of the children. This is the home of Mrs. Flossy Vidot, who since a very young age has been working with children and says she is committed to working with these young ones until she is no longer able.
“I started doing child care when I quit school at the age of 18. I worked with a lady called Mrs. Rouillon and we started with kids aged around six to seven years,” recalls Flossy Vidot as she looks back at her career.
The exposure sparked a growing interest in child care which led to her starting a day care service with another colleague at the Sir John Thorpe Hall situated behind the St. Paul Cathedral in Victoria.
“We moved to several locations before I finally decided to start my own service at home about 25 years ago,” she says.
Mrs. Vidot now cares for ten children aged nine months to three years in her home on the outskirts of Victoria , Hangard street, Mont Buxton district.
Prior to this she took care of kids in a room at the rear of her house where the children shared the same family amenities, for example the living room was converted as the sleeping area for the afternoon naps.
However, a room was built, inclusive of toilet and shower at the front part of the house to accommodate the kids; after IECD officials visited about a year ago and proposed a number of recommendations, based on the National standards for Childminders.
“Now the kids have all their amenities in one place. It’s also closer to my veranda and we use it as a play area too,” says Mrs Vidot proudly.
The childminder is also grateful for the IECD training as she feels they are a refresher and boost earlier programs she followed years ago. She learns new ideas, example, ‘how to prevent the spread of infections amongst children through ensuring good hygiene’.
“I like the fact that I now know how to deal with a child who has fallen ill and is unconscious. I now know how to handle the situation, with younger or older children, I won’t panic. I am happy that IECD taught me that,” she says.
Flossy Vidot is delighted about her good relationship with the IECD staff and she welcomes the advice that they give as it benefits her kids and her service.
She is thankful for the other benefits she receives for her service i.e. a monthly SCR5000 to pay the salary of her assistant. She also had a one-off start-up grant of SCR10, 000 which she used to buy some quality toys, shelves and mattresses.
She enjoys seeing her children active. “I will often bring them outside to play which they love. Even though they watch from a distance, they also enjoy watching me cook. Every Friday I do mimed story telling where I use soft toys to tell stories such as the three little pigs. When they don’t understand a verb, I show them the practical example,” explains Mrs. Vidot.
This childminder is happy with the legal stipulation that Childminders should have a maximum of ten children because it allows her to give adequate attention to each child and maximizes the teaching process.
At the age of 57, Flossy Vidot still wants to continue with her childminding occupation but believes that when she starts to get weary she will take less children.