Shetland childcare provider wins small business of the year accolade
23 February 2021
A childcare provider supported by the Access to Childcare Fund has won a major business award in recognition of how it responded to the challenges of coronavirus.
Hame Fae Hame, based in Scalloway on the Shetland Islands, won the Times / Lloyds Banking Group Small Business of 2020 Award, beating UK-wide competition.
The centre was rewarded for the creative and robust way it responded to the pandemic, strengthening childcare support for frontline workers and deepening outreach work with the local community.
Manager and owner Kaye Sandison says she and her colleagues “feel privileged and valued” that their work during lockdown has been recognised.
Hame Fae Hame is one of 15 providers awarded grants last year by the Access to Childcare Fund, which is funded by the Scottish Government and managed by Children in Scotland.
“Our Access to Childcare grant has definitely helped to strengthen our out of school staff team, with the appointment of an assistant manager and senior practitioner,” says Kaye.
“It’s also allowed us to make adjustments to our facilities so that we can offer a better, more easily accessed breakfast club and canteen when things are able to open up fully again.”
Kaye feels the pandemic has significantly raised the profile of high quality childcare across Scotland and the UK, with more people realising its fundamental contribution to communities, family life and equality.
Alongside welcoming this shift in societal attitudes, she has high hopes for what the centre can achieve in 2021.
“It will be important to get back to full opening and to refocus on our plans for developing our outdoor spaces, and continuing to work with our ELC and community partners on enhancing our provision,” she says.
“We will also continue to build resilience into our services and develop our staff team and our management capacity. And we look forward to working with Access to Childcare partners to learn from each other on how our various projects are contributing to policy development for the childcare sector!”