Rainbow Children’s Centre is a community managed Association. It provides a range of children’s services to families within Ballina Shire. We are a Charity and operate on a non-profit basis. We are run by local parents for Ballina families. All families using any of our services are welcome to become involved with the management of the Association.
Rainbow was established in 1986 on land provided by Ballina Shire Council and our main building was purpose built by the NSW Government as a child care facility. Our main premises is situated at 4 John Sharpe St East Ballina where the long day care service operate – while the out of School hours care services operate from four of the local primary schools.
As a community managed organisation, our Management Committee is comprised of community members, most of who are parents using our services. As a result the decisions made about our operations – our policies, our Mission, our annual objectives, our services and service levels, our fees, our staffing etc – are made by parents who use those same services. Hence we consider that we are very responsive to family needs and wishes and very flexible in meeting families’ best interests.
The Management of Rainbow has made a number of important decisions about how we operate:
- While we strive to provide high quality services we also recognise that not all families could afford to pay high fees and so we try to keep our fees at an affordable level.
- We welcome parents and other family members to be involved within our program and family members are welcome to visit and become involved if they wish.
- We do not do any fund raising. We set our fees each year to cover our operating expenses and ensure we can break even. Our staff spend their time working with children (not raising money)
- In acknowledging the value of the natural environment, we have put in place a number of sustainability initiatives including solar energy, stormwater recycling, and a natural shady playground. Children are involved in gardening, including herbs and vegetables and we utilise a worm farm and compost heap.
- We believe that well qualified and experienced staff are essential for good quality children’s services and have put in place staff wages levels and conditions to ensure we can attract and maintain a high quality workforce.
- Our staff are also a diverse group with staff of all ages and backgrounds – reflecting the diversity of our community. Please see the individual pages to see details of our two service types
- Rainbow Education and Care long day care centre
- Rainbow Out Of School Hours Care offering before and after school and vacation care for primary school aged children.
Rainbow has developed formal policies which set out how we plan to operate and meet all our external expectations. Full copies of those policies are available at the Rainbow main office and at each of the OOSHC services. Please ask staff to show you a copy of the policies if you wish to see them. If you would like to see any of the policies reviewed, please attend the next Committee Meeting and you are welcome to raise your interest or concern in the meeting.