How to start a daycare center in Nigeria Day care centers are in higher demand than ever before, and if you love working with children, opening one can be a smart and enjoyable business choice. Start small by running a neighborhood day care from your home, or select a commercial space for a larger day care business. This article outlines the qualifications you need to start a day care, how to set up a day care center, and ideas for getting clients and making your business profitable.
Understand the pros and cons of operating a day care
If you’re considering opening a day care, you probably already know that you love working with kids. Take these other elements of running a day care into account before you make the decision to devote yourself to starting a new business:
- Are you ready to handle the mishaps, behavioral issues and emergencies that arise when working with kids? Consider getting first aid and CPR training and potentially taking classes on childcare before assuming this responsibility.
- The children’s parents will have high expectations concerning their kids’ activities and education while under your care. It helps to have a degree in education or experience teaching or working at a day care before opening your own.
- A day care is a business, and as a business owner you’ll be in charge of employee management, bookkeeping, marketing, and other responsibilities that come with running a small business in addition to providing childcare.
Decide on a location
Before you settle on running a home day care, make sure you have enough space for children you wish to serve. Is the bathroom located close to the intended play area? Is there a fenced-in outdoor yard? A commercial space should also be large enough to accommodate the number of kids who will join your day care. It should have a large play area, an outside space, a convenient bathroom area, and a kitchen for preparing snacks.
Find out what the Law Requires
Some states may have laws which regulate crèches and day care services. These laws may require day care operators to be licensed or certified by the authority or professional association. Most of these laws and regulations have become necessary to discourage and punish any form of child abuse. As a result, the strict guidelines may often increase the cost of running a daycare center business. Some of these regulations specify the minimum space and staffing requirements, the maximum number of children that can be admitted (depending on space), types of toys, mandatory documentation and many other things.
These strict regulations are responsible for the low profit margins experienced by daycare businesses in many states. It’s very important that you check with the authority to understand what the law requires from day care operators in your area. Getting shut down by the authorities after you have opened for business may cost you a lot of money and your reputation.
Regulatory Requirements for Starting a Creche Business in Nigeria
The regulatory requirements for starting a crèche business include:
- Register your business: The Creche needs to be registered as a business with the Corporate Affairs Commission (C.A.C). Also, the owner of the creche care center needs to apply for a license.
- Obtain a permit: The Ministry of Women Affairs is saddled with the responsibility of certifying a creche. The fee to obtain the form is determined by the location of the crè This simply means to obtain the permit to start up a creche at Victoria Island is going to be more expensive than Ikorodu. The certificate is usually granted after a year of inspection by a representative of the Women Affairs Commission.
Educational Requirements/Trainings and Certification
- Owner’s Qualification: The owner is expected to have a degree in Education or at least a post graduate diploma.
- Staff Qualification: The staff are also expected to trained care givers. They must have a reasonable experience in handling children or have some sort of certificate to be sure they are the perfect fit for the job
- Training and Certification: States vary on the training and certification required to open a crè Some states may require first aid certification or an arranged contact at the local health center so that first aid can be easily administered if needed. Child care training courses may also be required for the owner or employees
Infrastructure/Fun Activities and Equipment
- Building Requirements: The owner is required to have a building of his or her own. The size of the space however depends on the number of children involved Most states allow crèche operators the option to run a creche out of their home or in a commercial location
- Activities and Equipment: All equipment should be child safe and child accessible. Toys, artistic supplies, or other activities should be provided for children attending the day care center, as should schedule activities such as play times, nutritious meals, and nap times for younger children. Special need children can also attend the same day care with regular children as long as the day care has the facilities the child might require.
- Safety: The location chosen for a creche must be safe. Before a license is issued, a potential crèche location is inspected by the state Ministry of Women Affairs representative to make sure that it meets state requirements and safety regulations.
Arrange for a Sick Bay
When dealing with children you have to be careful as they are delicate. Children when playing can get injured and could require medical attention or at least first aid.
Also we can have children who fall sick and this is why a sick bay will be needed for children to have treatment, be given medicine and have a good rest.
Without marketing, a lot of businesses are bound to fail or remain stagnant so you mustn’t fail to create proper awareness on your daycare center. This could be by word of mouth to your friends and family, making a small signboard and placing in front of your home, internet marketing and if you can afford it, adverts on media outlet such as the TV stations, radio stations and newspapers.
Equipment needed for a daycare center .
The equipment needed should be inclusive of some or all of the following:
Art and craft supplies
Tables and chairs
Diapers and wipes
first aid/CPR certification
High chairs and booster seats
First aid kit
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- 2016 Fellow, Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme
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He is an alumnus of Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Lagos Business School (LBS), Pan-Atlantic University (PAU). Through his training, mentoring, speaking and coaching programmes, he has empowered many young people over the years to start and grow their own business, build wealth, create multiple streams of income and achieve financial independence.
- He is a Certified Trainer in Design Thinking by the U.S Consulate, Lagos and the inspire Africa Entrepreneurship Institute.