Children up to four years old can be looked after in a daycare centre or crèche. Some daycare centres have special groups for babies and toddlers; others combine the two age groups. There is typically a strict timetable for play, eating and sleeping. Young babies are normally kept to their home feeding and sleeping patterns.
Most daycare facilities are open from 08:00 to 18:00 and offer all-day care. Some have longer opening hours and offer the possibility of half-day or even 24-hour care. All childcare centres must comply with a strict standard of quality according to Dutch law.
Parents may also choose to have their baby, toddler or young child looked after by a babysitter. In this case, a babysitter who is registered with an agency, would care for your child(ren) in their home or yours. Babysitters may only care for a maximum of four children at any one time. Babysitter may also agree to care for your children during the evening, night or weekend. Parents and babysitters can get in touch with each other through an agency. The agency selects personnel and inspects places of care for safety and hygiene on a regular basis.
Childcare through an employer
Employers are not legally obliged to contribute to the cost of childcare. Some employers rent spaces at daycare centres, and others have their own daycare centres. In both cases the waiting lists are often shorter and the costs lower.
For a full list of the Expatcenter’s partners, including childcare providers, or for more information on the Partnership Program, please click here.
Humanitas Childcare Foundation (Stichting Kinderopvang Humanitas)
A network of about 80 daycare centres and addresses of child minders
Telephone: +31 (0)45 572 9797 / +31 (0)45 561 5353
Website: www.humanitas-kov.nl (Dutch)
A mediation group that connects parents with a network of babysitters
Telephone: +31 (0)63 972 4108
The Netherlands Childcare Foundation (Stichting Kinderopvang Nederland, SKON)
A national group of daycare centres
Telephone: +31 (0)34 735 9500
The Dutch National Childcare Register (Landelijk Register Kinderopvang en Peuterspeelzalen) has a list of daycare centres, where you can check if they satisfy quality demands. It is useful to know that a red dot means the centre has had a negative report.
Website: Landelijk Register Kinderopvang en Peuterspeelzalen (also check Amsterdam Mamas' advice for using the childcare register)