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BLOG: Working with Coronavirus- Bethany's experience / Profiad Bethany – Gweithio gyda Coronafeirws

Darllenwch hyn yn Gymraeg yma. Read this in Welsh here.

I have been working as a childminder for three and a half years in Blaenau Gwent in Wales. When the coronavirus hit I was really nervous to continue childminding for children of key workers or vulnerable children. My daughter was only 16 months at the time and I was concerned for her wellbeing.

Financial issues were also a worry. How would we cope without my wage coming in? How long would we be in lock down and only able to provide childcare to certain families? Would the children I cared for ever come back? Would my business survive?

However, I followed Welsh Government guidance, informed parents, and hoped for the best. My critical worker families chose to keep their children home and so I busied myself updating my policies, procedures and risk assessments.

After eight weeks of lockdown I was contacted by one of the Flying Start team in my Local Authority and asked if I could help out a family in need with temporary childcare. I was happy to do so and started to prepare a contract.

Completing a childminding contract

In normal circumstances I would invite a parent round and we would discuss and complete a contract together.  As this was now impossible I talked through each section with the parent over the phone. I then completed as much as I could of the contract before posting it through the parent’s door for them to fill in their sections and sign and date. I encouraged them to phone me with any further questions. This worked well. I also e mailed copies of my policies and procedures rather than provide them in paper form.

Social distancing

I was worried about picking the child up from their home however I was able to stand back from the door and the child walked across to me. This made me think further about a need to write a drop off/pick up policy as I needed to consider how I would manage drop offs of younger children and babies.  I decided that the use of a pushchair would be best in these instances.  I may also consider staggered drop off/pick up times.

Social distancing was also a concern when settling children into the setting. How would I manage this with a young child who was experiencing some separation anxiety? I decided that children’s emotional needs must come first and a child that needed cuddles should have them. Families need to know that their child will be nurtured and shown love. However this will be balanced by careful hygiene routines and common sense.

Hygiene

Following the guidance on careful handwashing I now encourage children to wash their hands on arrival, frequently throughout the day and on leaving my setting. Coats and shoes are left at the door and no outdoor shoes are worn in the house.  When drying their hands children use a clean flannel which is then taken to be washed after each use. This single use of flannels allows me to follow infection control guidance and also reduce waste.

I also thought carefully about the types and amount of toys and resources I have. Soft toys are difficult to keep clean so I made the decision to remove these from my setting. I have also condensed the amount of toys available so that they can be easily rotated and disinfected at the end of each day.

Kitchen hygiene is really important. I asked parents to provide plastic wipeable lunchboxes that I wipe down on arrival and store in a separate part of my fridge. I have also started wearing gloves when preparing food as an extra protection.

Outside play

I was so happy that I was able to use my Capital Grant funding from my Local Authority to improve my garden earlier this year. 

Outdoor play has become even more important now that we cannot take children to public parks and play centres.  I have adapted my working practices here as well. For example during sand play I provide the children with separate trays of sand. For water play I have added soap to this and is done through the use of individual bowls to ensure there is no physical contact between children during the play. This is extra fun with the bubbles and also encourages hand washing games.

I am happy that I have been able to support a family through this crisis and doing so has given me an opportunity to rethink my working practices, and reflect on my hygiene routines. I am continually adapting as I risk assess different situations and different children’s needs. When settings are able to reopen fully in Wales I feel I will be better prepared. 

Read other experiences and access resources in the Coronavirus spotlight

Rwyf wedi bod yn gweithio fel gwarchodwr plant am dair blynedd yn hanner ym Mlaenau Gwent yng Nghymru. Pan darodd y Coronafeirws mi oeddwn yn ofnus iawn i barhau gofalu am blant bregus a gweithwyr hanfodol. Roeddwn yn poeni am les fy merch gan ei bod ond 16 mis oed ar y pryd.

Roedd materion ariannol hefyd yn bryder. Sut byddwn yn ymdopi heb y cyflog? Pa mor hir byddai’r cyfyngiadau yn parhau ac yn darparu gofal i rai teuluoedd yn unig? Byddai’r plant yn fy ngofal byth yn dychwelyd? Byddai’r busnes yn goroesi?

Serch hynny, dilynais arweiniad Llywodraeth Cymru, diweddarwyd rhieni, a gobeithiais am y gorau. Dewisodd y teuluoedd hanfodol i gadw eu plant adref ac felly bues i’n brysur yn diweddaru fy  mholisïau, gweithdrefnau ac asesiadau risg.

Ar ôl wyth wythnos o’r cyfyngiadau gwnaeth aelod o dîm Dechrau’n Deg o’r Awdurdod Lleol cysylltu â mi yn gofyn a byddwn yn gallu helpu teulu gyda gofal plant dros dro. Roeddwn yn hapus i wneud hynny a chychwynnais ar baratoi'r contract.

Cwblhau contract gwarchod plant

Mewn amgylchiadau cyffredin byddwn yn gwahodd rhiant i mewn a byddwn yn trafod a chwblhau’r contract gyda’n gilydd. Gan fod hyn bellach yn amhosib, siaradais trwy bob adran gyda'r rhiant dros y ffôn. Fe wnes i gwblhau cymaint ag y gallwn o’r contract cyn anfon i’r rhiant er mwyn iddynt lenwi’r adrannau priodol ac i arwyddo a’i dyddio. Anogais iddynt alw os oedd ganddynt unrhyw gwestiynau pellach. Gweithiodd hyn yn dda. Fe wnes i hefyd e-bostio copïau o’n polisïau a gweithdrefnau yn hytrach na ddarparu nhw mewn ffyrdd papur.

Cadw pellter cymdeithasol

Roeddwn yn poeni am gasglu’r plentyn o’i gartref, er hynny roeddwn yn gallu sefyll digon pell oddi ar y drws a cerddodd y plentyn draw ata’i. Gwnaeth hyn wneud i mi feddwl yn fwy manwl ac ysgrifennu polisi gollwng a chasglu, gan ystyried sut byddwn yn rheoli casglu a gollwng baban neu blentyn ifanc. Penderfynais mai defnyddio pram oedd y cam orau yn y sefyllfaoedd yma. Byddaf hefyd yn ystyried amseroedd penodedig gollwng /casglu.

Roedd cadw pellter cymdeithasol hefyd yn bryder wrth wahodd plentyn i mewn i’r lleoliad. Sut byddwn yn rheoli hyn gyda phlentyn bach a oedd yn profi pryder gwahanu? Penderfynais mai anghenion emosiynol y plentyn oedd yn bwysig a bod plentyn sydd angen cwtsh yn derbyn hyn. Mae angen i deuluoedd gwybod bod eu plentyn yn cael ei feithrin a dangos cariad tuag at. Fodd bynnag, bydd hyn yn cael ei gydbwyso gan arferion hylendid gofalus a synnwyr cyffredin.

Hylendid

Trwy ddilyn yr arweiniad am olchi dwylo’n ofalus rwy’n annog plant i olchi eu dwylo wrth gyrraedd, yn aml trwy gydol y dydd ac wrth adael fy lleoliad. Mae cotiau ac esgidiau yn cael eu gadael wrth y drws, ac nid oes esgidiau yn cael eu gwisgo yn y tŷ. Wrth sychu dwylo, mae’r plant yn defnyddio tywel bach glân sydd wedyn yn cael ei lanhau. Mae’r defnydd yma o ddefnyddio’r tywelion bach yn caniatáu imi ddilyn canllawiau rheoli heintiau a hefyd lleihau gwastraff.

Fe wnes i hefyd meddwl yn ofalus am y mathau a’r nifer o deganau ac adnoddau sydd gen i. Mae teganau meddal yn anodd cadw’n lân, felly penderfynais i roi nhw i ffwrdd dros dro. Rwyf hefyd wedi cywasgu’r nifer o deganau sydd ar gael er mwyn iddynt gael ei chylchdroi a glanhau’n hawdd ar ddiwedd pob dydd.

Mae hylendid y gegin yn bwysig iawn. Gofynnais i rieni i ddarparu bocs bwyd plastic sydd yn cael ei sychu yn syth wrth i’r plentyn gyrraedd, ac sy’n cael ei gadw mewn adran ar wahân yr oergell. Dwy hefyd wedi dechrau gwisgo menig wrth baratoi bwyd fel rhagofal ychwanegol.

Chwarae tu allan

Roeddwn mor hapus fy mod yn gallu defnyddio’r Grant Cyfalaf, derbyniwyd gan yr Awdurdod Lleol i wella’r ardd yn gynharach yn y flwyddyn.

Mae chwarae yn yr awyr agored wedi dod yn bwysicach fyth gan nad ydynt yn gallu ymweld â pharciau cyhoeddus a chanolfannau chwarae. Rwyf wedi addasu fy arferion gweithio yma hefyd. Er enghraifft, yn ystod chwarae tywod rwy’n darparu hambyrddau o dywod ar wahân i’r plant. Yn ystod chwarae tywod darparaf hambyrddau o dywod unigol i'r plant. Ar gyfer chwarae dŵr rwyf wedi ychwanegu sebon at hyn ac yn defnyddio powlenni unigol i sicrhau nad oes unrhyw gyswllt corfforol rhwng plant yn ystod y gweithgaredd. Mae hyn yn hwyl ychwanegol gyda'r swigod ac yn annog gemau golchi dwylo.

Rwy’n hapus fy mod wedi gallu cefnogi’r teulu drwy’r argyfwng hwn ac mae gwneud hynny wedi rhoi cyfle imi ailfeddwl am fy arferion gwaith, ac adlewyrchu ar fy arferion hylendid. Rwy’n parhau i addasu trwy asesu gwahanol sefyllfaoedd risg ac anghenion gwahanol blant. Teimlaf fy mod wedi paratoi'n dda ar gyfer yr amser i ailagor yn llawn yng Nghymru.

Darllenwch brofiadau eraill a chewch hyd i adnoddau yn ‘Spotlight’ Coronafirws.

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