Name: Carrie Lapierre, Monika Brown, Sharon Ward and Amanda Dawe
Introducing the North Side Casual Child Care Team
Position: North Side Child Care Service
(Image Source: PMFRC)
Nothing is better than a parent’s endorsement.
Tell us more about your role at the PMFRC and the programs you are involved in. How long have you worked for the PMFRC?
Our team provides casual child care to give parents the opportunity to get away for a few hours to run errands, go to an appointment or just take some ‘me time’. We also provide back-up care if your regular child care provider is unavailable. If you come to visit, you will notice that the children are always changing because we are not a full-time child care service. Day-to-day, we play, engage, model behaviour and care for children from birth to age six.
As a team we have quite a bit of experience working with the PMFRC, with three staff members in this service for over 16 years. We don’t say we’re old, we just like to play.
Tell me about your background (experience, education, etc.)
All of our team members understand the military experience, whether being raised in a military family or marrying a member. We know what it is like when spouses or fathers/mothers are deployed, gone on courses and homecomings. We understand and we can empathize with the challenges and accomplishments that come with being part of a military family.
What can people expect to see when they first meet you?
Well sometimes it’s a noisy first hello, but hopefully they see a service bustling with energy and fun-loving children and adults. We are a team that genuinely cares about your needs and we want to help.
What is your favorite part about working for the PMFRC?
We are always changing -- we continually welcome new families and love being a part of our families’ experiences during their time in Petawawa. Within our service we are trying new activities, songs, stories or staff taking new training to further enhance our service.
What is your greatest accomplishment or proudest moment working for the PMFRC?
Nothing is better than a parent’s endorsement. We feel like we have accomplished something great when parents suggest our service to other parents and say how much they like the care and support they have received.
There are also so many proud moments -- watching a family struggle with the beginning of a deployment and seeing them grow and build confidence as they learn that they are strong and capable. Seeing new parents become more relaxed and confident with their babies, seeing families adjust to a new base, and seeing children go from watching other children playing to joining in, knowing that we helped out just a little bit.
Where are you from and what brought you to Petawawa? How long have you lived here?
We were all brought to Petawawa by a military member; some come from closer distances, moving from parts of Ontario, to longer distances, like Germany.
What advice do you have for families transitioning to Petawawa?
Petawawa is a great place with lots to offer if you go looking for it. Don’t stay cooped up in your home. The PMFRC has a lot of programs. The town, Public Library, and Rec Plex also have programs to suit almost everyone’s interests; if you ask they may even be able to offer new programs to suit your needs. Remember there are a lot of other spouses, significant others and families who are going through the same things as you are. It’s always nice to know you’re not alone in it.
What is your favorite thing about living in the area? What is your favorite thing to do in the winter? The summer?
Petawawa offers almost anything you could get in any other place, except possibly great shopping, but that’s still only a drive away.
Leave us with a few words of wisdom -- what is your favorite quote?
We are all parents, so we’ve been there and done that! Sleep is precious, take the break!
“If “plan A” didn’t work, stay calm, the alphabet has 25 more letters” -Unknown
“Laughter is timeless. Imagination has no age. And dreams are forever” -Tinkerbell