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Babysitting Cooperatives - A Community-Based Approach To Childcare

Updated on September 15, 2012
Make Child Care More Fun With Babysitting Cooperatives
Make Child Care More Fun With Babysitting Cooperatives

Did you even know that babysitting cooperatives exist?

Well, I really hope that you would say yes because they offer you the chance to save thousands of dollars a year!

As parents get more and more preoccupied with their day jobs and ongoing careers, the question of "who is going to take care of the kids?" becomes much more looming and pressing. Of course, hiring a nanny is an option that most parents would be willing to take and sometimes outsourcing works to help get the job done. But what if you don't have enough money to hire a nanny? What if your income is just enough to get you through the week? To whom will you entrust the safety of your children?

Years ago, employing a nanny to look after the kids was a "no-brainer" for most parents. Paying for the services of a baby sitter was considered practical and sensible especially for working couples who have no time to spare for child care. Unfortunately, the present economic condition has become so tough that a lot of parents are not able to generate money like they used to. As a result, paying for a childcare service may not be the best choice for working parents especially in today's tough economic times.

If you haven't heard of them yet, babysitting cooperatives have just started to become popular in the past couple of years. What is a babysitting cooperative, you say? Basically, it is just a congregation or a cooperative made up of community-based parents who exchange babysitting services with one another. Instead of exchanging cash, these communities are basically exchanging their babysitting time. You get points when you sit for someone else, and you spend points when others are sitting for you. Simple as that.

In case you are looking for a cheaper alternative to employing a nanny and you want to lessen the costs of babysitting, signing up for a babysitting coop membership is something that you might want to consider. Although the idea behind babysitting coops have been around for quite some time now, not many parents are exposed to the fact that this kind of organized and efficient babysitting does exist. Having said that, the anonymity of childcare cooperatives to most parents does not take away the fact that they possess the most efficient service available today. Babysitting coops took the idea of a babysitting exchange community to a whole new level, allowing parents to save thousands of dollars each year as a result.

Are you familiar with babysitting cooperatives?

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How do babysitting cooperatives work?

Ever heard of exchanged babysitting? Yup, that's the idea behind it!

To help you understand the advantages of joining a cooperative babysitting and how babysitting cooperatives work, it is first important to define what they are and what they do. According to some websites, a babysitting coop is simply a group made up of people willing to exchange childcare services with each other. When doing transactions, coop meambers use a special credit called "babysitting points" instead of using real cash. Once a member is able to acquire enough babysitting points, he or she can ask for free babysitting from the other members of the baby sitting cooperative.

To be able to acquire these points, a babysitting cooperative member must provide child care services to another member. This is the only way for members to obtain childcare points because these points cannot be bought by money alone. By exchanging babysitting with one another, babysitting coop members are able to eliminate the need to hire a babysitter. Because of this, the money that would have been spent on babysitting expenses can now be saved for other purposes.

Every babysitting hour that you do for one parent will net you an hour for yourself. You can exchange these hours that you earned from babysitting so that when time comes that you need someone to babysit your kids, you won't have to pay for a nanny anymore. This is a very good concept and it has actually garnered a lot of support from parents who hire nannies to look after their kids, saying that they were able to save hundreds of dollars a month through this wonderful and unique community service.

Babysitting cooperatives might be trending right now, but the ideas that work behind them have been working for centuries already. By taking the concept of "community babysitting" to a whole new level, babysitting coops are able not only to help parents save money but also help the children meet new friends and families. If you are interested in cutting down the costs of your babysitting, why not join a babysitting coop in your community today?

If you are looking for an affordable, modern-day child care alternative, why not try joining a babysitting cooperative?

There are actually a number of ways on how you can join a babysitting exchange cooperative. You can browse local newspapers, directories and listings for advertisements coming from a babysitting coop in your city or state. This might be tedious and boring at first, but once you get the hang of it you'll definitely find it easy to do.


Alternatively, you can also look for websites that offer their services to help you find that babysitting community within your city or state. These websites will arrange everything from your membership requirements to your actual application process. This makes the search for a babysitting cooperative a lot easier and less daunting.

Some cooperative babysitting websites such as SittingAround offers a service that covers everything that you need in order to find that babysitting community in your vicinity. You just have to become a member of their website and they will help you apply for a membership at the closest babysitting cooperative in your location. Your babysitting points, application to babysit for other parents, request for babysitting services and a lot of other related tasks are also managed by SittingAround, so all you have to do is sit and relax for the remainder of your day!

What are the advantages of joining a babysitting cooperative?

Even at a glance, you can surely see the importance of babysitting exchange.

(To make you understand it better, here is an article that discusses the advantages of joining a babysitting cooperative).

By joining a babysitting coop, you are saving hundreds and thousands of dollars if you start adopting this concept of babysitting for others. Nanny services do not come for free and in these hard economic times, saving every dollar and penny definitely counts.

Another thing that makes babysitting coops very successful is the new concept of community and camaraderie that it brings to the members. Because most members are also your neighbors, taking care of their kids creates a stronger bond within the community. It is also a relief for parents to know that their kids are safely playing within the vicinity of their neighbors' house instead of leaving them in the hands of a stranger they barely even know.

The truth behind the success of cooperative babysitting is the genuine care and concern that members have for the children of their cooperative. If you take your time to provide genuine love and care for the children of your neighbors, expect the same amount of karma to be given back to your kids too. What you give is what you get!

The future of child care is in your hands!

With this "community-based approach" to child care, babysitting cooperatives are definitely here to stay. If you have been looking for an affordable alternative to babysitting that also offers a great opportunity for your child to grow, mature and meet new friends in return, cooperative babysitting is definitely something that you can explore!

To get you started on your road to community babysitting, learn how to join a babysitting cooperative and enjoy exchanged babysitting in your neighborhood today!

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