In changed nappies, in nap times, in treating scraped knees during play time. In families, in reassuring cuddles, in confidence gained – how do you measure the impact of a day care provider?

Brassall mother Terri Rosevear has racked up her fair share of stats caring for other people’s children for the past three decades. She has held hundreds of tiny hands and given thousands of big cuddles to the most precious among us.

In history repeating

As it so happens, Mrs Rosevear finds herself now teaching the children of some of the first children she taught many years ago.

“I remember Candi being pushed into a stroller to day care every day by her mum Christine. She was always a happy little girl, with beautiful little blonde curls who made friends easily. I never in my wildest dreams could have imagined that around 20 years later, Candi would have a son that I would also care for,” she said.

“The fact that they don’t live in the area and Candi drives past many other options in her 25 minute drive, so Lucah can be in my care, is very heart warming.

“It is a bit of a double edged sword when I think that this is the second generation of a family I have helped educate and care for because it feels very special to have that connection with the second generation but it also reminds me that I’ve been around for a while.”

In the kind words of others

Choices Family Day Care coordinator Sue Nobbs says there is a high turnover in the child care industry so getting past five years is a special achievement.

“Terri is my longest serving day care provider. I hope she makes it to 50 years,” she said.

“She is very good at what she does and it’s wonderful to see her turn a child around and make a positive difference in their lives.”

In her passion for her career

“I firmly believe those first five years are the most important,” Mrs Rosevear said.

“Young children are like sponges.

“When you look at how much they progress and develop in those first five years, they need someone to observe what their interests are so you can extend on that and then extend on that again.

“If they are not getting that, then they get stunted.

“They go to school and their not ready, if they are not wanting to be challenged it puts them on the back foot for starting a good education at school,” she said.

In doing what comes naturally

Mrs Rosevear said: “I’m the youngest of seven and my oldest brother is 20 years older than me. Plus there was a big gap to when I came along.

“I was closer in age to my nephews and nieces so when we had family gatherings I would automatically round the kids up and play with them.

“I was a live in nanny for my sister on the weekends looking after her six month old and two year old, so I always just seemed to know what to do.

In seeing a child ‘get it’

“Being able to help a child learn new things and to see the joy in their faces when “the penny drops, and they get it” is priceless and without a doubt the most rewarding part for me,” Mrs Rosevear said.

“Whilst the job can be tiring at times, the children keep me young with their enthusiasm and boundless energy. They are so unfiltered with what they have to say which keeps from taking myself too seriously. Children remind you to take time out for fun, enjoy the little things and smell the roses, so to speak.

“All too often as adults we can get bogged down in the day to day routines of what has to be done and working with children reminds me that to stay balanced you have to take time for the things that matter. To me, that’s my family and friends,” she said.

In lessons learned

“I have a favourite quote that I have been using in day care for decades,” Mrs Rosevear said.

“A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in or the car I drove. But the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”

It has become somewhat of a mantra.

So how do you measure the impact of a day care provider?

How about – LOVE?

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