According to a recent survey, roughly 4 million U.S. employees work from home at least half of the week, and that number is still growing. Changing patterns of work have brought disruptions not only to the traditional office scene, bringing forth a widening range of coworking workplaces, but also to existing childcare options. For those who no longer need to hire a nanny or a babysitter full-time, some coworking companies have added play, nap or nursing rooms to their amenities. Parents can pay by the hour or chose a membership package that has the most convenient price and number of daycare hours that best suit their needs.
While the adults are busy adding the finishing touches to their latest project, or making an important client call, kids are looked after and engaged in educational and creative activities appropriate to their age group. By sponsoring memberships at these coworking communities, companies that work with freelancers or give their employees remote working options can retain valuable talent, as these places help young parents find a way to balance their need to be productive at work with their responsibilities towards the wellbeing of their children.
Continuing our series on coworking offices with childcare services, we are taking a look at some of the available options for working parents in the South. Keep reading to find out more details regarding these companies.
When the Weisers set out to create The Hive, a coworking office space in Austin, they wanted to create a community that would make both working moms and dads feel welcome. They also wished for their space to showcase the achievements and products of Texas parent-entrepreneurs.
Those visiting The Hive will witness parents and children hanging out in the cafe and lounge area, both free of charge. Step outside and you can enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of the shady courtyard with picnic tables and plenty of toys to keep the little ones busy. A selection of hot and cold beverages, smoothies, snacks and meals is available on-site, so parents need not worry about grabbing something delicious and filling for lunch.
The company has a total of 20 spots available in their supervised childcare area. Reservations are made online and, since The Hive does not provide a full-time daycare service, members need to observe a number of house rules and limitations.
For instance, children can only stay up to 4 hours per day, and no more than 12 hours per week, Monday to Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Parents are not allowed to leave the premises and will be called upon for diaper changes and bathroom visits. Also, babies must be at least 6 months old. Members can choose an hourly rate for childcare, or save money by using a 10, 25 or 50-hour package.
You finally found a great place to work: an exciting coworking office where you can meet other professionals, and which also offers childcare services at competitive rates. Now all you have to worry about is junior’s summer camp options for this year. Not if you join Nido, a non-profit coworking office in Durham, N.C., with a Montessori Preschool for 6 months-6 year-olds, which runs a summer camp between June and August.
Nido began with a potluck, during which several families joined forces to establish a co-op that would help working parents share a community and space in the city’s Walltown neighborhood, built around a set of agreed-upon principles. This model of open dialogue is a tradition Nido maintains to this day. Every term during Community Meetings, members are asked for feedback and encouraged to help out if they have skills that can benefit the space. The work they put in can go towards paying for their childcare expenses if they apply through the organization’s work/trade program.
Nido’s childcare program has a half-day membership option during the school year, from September to May, and both a half-day and full-day option during the summer. They also have an afternoon program, running between 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday, kids’ afternoons are structured to include story, rest, snack, creative activity and outdoor play time.
Visit Biz Lounge’s coworking office in Walton Beach, Fla. and let your kid have fun in the Bizzy Bodies Playroom, where the daily schedule includes story time, snacks and arts and craft lessons. The company’s childcare services are handled by CPR and First Aid-certified childcare providers, and members can choose to pay per hour or buy the $75 monthly package. Parents cannot leave the premises while their children are in daycare and will be contacted to attend to their needs.
Members can participate in weekly playdates, welcoming both moms and dads, featuring storytelling and creative activities, plus loads of fun and singing. Parents and kids can also bond over cookie decoration and during potlucks held on the premises. Biz Lounge hosts Parent to Parent – Panhandle Florida’s workshops, a program with the aim to encourage quality education for military-connected children.
Here’s something different: The Cube, Maryland’s first coworking office offering childcare services, is staffed with grannies! Children up to 7 years old can be dropped off at this Baltimore coworking office to be watched over by a favorite grandmother. Additionally, the play area has plenty of eco-friendly toys, a CPR-certified staff and special activity areas.
Dr. Tammira Lucas and Tekesha Jamison created the company to help out parents who wanted to spend time with their children without having to compromise their fulfilling careers. For $15 per day, parents can leave up to two children for a maximum of three hours at The Cube’s daycare, or pay by the hour, according to their needs.
Parents are encouraged to spend quality time with their children at swim parties held at Owing Mills Swimming school, as well as enjoy some downtime away from the many responsibilities of parenthood at The Cube’s Movie Nights, Parent Date Nights or Girls’ Night.
Those thinking of joining this community might also be delighted to learn that through a partnership with BBB Foundation and other local organizations, the company provides a six-month member scholarship to help boost the fledgling parent-owned businesses.