Bumbles stays open for NHS keyworkers

Due to the Corona Virus pandemic, Bumbles was very quick to put measures in place to be able to remain open to provide emergency childcare for NHS keyworkers throughout March and April.

At the beginning of the pandemic and until further information was provided by the government, we developed a response strategy and implemented it straightaway. See ‘Bumbles Covid 19 Response Strategy’ blog for more details.

Without dwelling too much on the lack of guidance and attention for Day Care providers at the start of this pandemic, and at the commencement of the lockdown, most Day Care providers were carefully making decisions to temporarily close their doors, understanding that families would have to stay home.

With much debate myself about what was best to do for the health and well-being of my staff, our children and everyone’s families, the support I received from my team and then parents (keyworkers and non-keyworkers) was heart-warming.

After continuous communication with staff and our parents, we established how many NHS keyworker children we could accommodate safely and how many NHS keyworker families needed their Bumbles’ place. I consulted with my team to identify those able and willing to continue to provide care within our setting. We agreed that with the measures we had put in place, we would be able to accommodate our NHS keyworker families. Reduced numbers of children and reduced numbers of staff, together with increased health and safety and hygiene processes put in place provided reassurance.

Towards the end of March, we were contacted by the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust to ask that we continue to remain open.  Due to other day nurseries closing their doors, over 500 keyworker families in Belfast needed emergency childcare. Over this time, we have been able to welcome some of these families to Bumbles and hope their children are enjoying their time with us.