What kind of creche is Giving Tree?

Giving Tree is an English-French bilingual crèche parentale.

  • This means half the teaching staff speak English to the children, and half speak French.
  • The word parentale indicates that parents are involved in the running of the creche.
  • Giving Tree is also committed to being environmentally-friendly and incorporates green practices like using washable nappies, composting, planting trees, and buying locally-sourced materials and seasonal produce, to name a few.
  • The approach is Montessori-inspired, and focuses on encouraging autonomy and puts the well-being of the child above all else.

What do I have to do in a crèche parentale?
As a member of a parent-run organisation, you commit to taking part in the life of the creche. This includes:

  • undertaking a three-and-a-half hour “permanence” once a week
  • taking on a commission, which can require between 4 and 10 hours a month. Some examples of commissions are: president, treasurer, hygiene, IT, maintenance, green etc.
  • participating in parent committee meetings every two months
  • participating in twice-a-year cleaning sessions that require a half day of your time.
  • You may also be requested to help with outings and special events.

What is a permanence?
The permanence or “perm” is a weekly commitment to help with the daily running of the creche.

One parent for each child must come to the creche for 3.5 hours per week to help with tasks such as cleaning, preparing meals and snacks, and helping with opening and closing.

Perms are generally divided into four daily slots: 7.45am-11.15am, 10am-1.30pm, 11.45am-3.15pm, and 3.15pm-6.45pm. When you join the creche, you must commit to one of these slots on the same day every week. There is also a weekend perm, which all parents must undertake at least twice per year.

Do parents take care of the children at the creche?
No, there is a hired professional team responsible for the children’s care and activities. During their permanence, parents are frequently invited to take part in activities with the children, but this is always under the guidance of the team.

What ages do you accept?
Giving Tree is open to children from 10 weeks to 3 years old. A special programme exists for children from 3-4 years old called the “Owl Programme”, either full time (all day Wednesdays) and/or school holidays.

How can I apply?
All applications must be sent via our online form. You will be automatically informed of the status of your request once we receive your application. Throughout the year, spaces may open up and you will be contacted for an interview. Only after being interviewed will you be notified of whether or not your application has been successful. Our main annual recruitment takes place in April for September entries.

Does our family have to be bilingual English / French?
No, Giving Tree is open to all families. Languages are a rich part of our project and all languages are welcome. Our multicultural team speaks English and French with the children, but they will take the time to learn key expressions and important words in your family’s language.

Are part-time places available?
As a parent-run structure, it is difficult for us to offer part-time places. However, we are open to proposals from families that can find arrangements with other families to make up a full-time place.

How much does it cost?
Giving Tree is an equal opportunity structure and bases its pricing structure on the French system called the PSU (prestation de service unique). Families working with international or European contracts are not entitled to the PSU and will be charged the full price. For more information, please consult our pricing model.

What are the requirements to apply for a place?
You must be a resident of Strasbourg, be available for a permanence once a week, interested in the project, and motivated by participating in the association. All applications must be sent via our online form.

What happens to my perm if I’m busy/out of town and can’t make it?
You are responsible for finding another parent to replace you during your permanence. This usually works very well and allows you to get to know other parents. It is called perm swapping. Please note that you can only be replaced by your spouse/partner or another member of the association. This means other members of your family or friends cannot replace you.

What are the opening and closing times of the creche?
The creche is open from 7.45am to 6.45pm, Monday to Friday. It is closed on public holidays.

Does the creche close for holidays?
Giving Tree is closed for 5 weeks a year. Parents jointly decide which weeks the creche will be closed at the Parent Committee meeting. Usually, parents decide to close the establishment for 3-4 weeks from the end of July to mid-August, and 1-2 weeks at the end of the year.

What are the advantages of a crèche parentale?
A parent-run creche is a unique opportunity to partake in the life of your child’s first social activities. The teaching team works with parents to provide the highest quality care for their children. It is an opportunity to get to know new families and work with a dedicated team of professionals.

What are the disadvantages ?
A crèche parentale requires a considerable commitment over the years your child attends it. As a parent-run structure, Giving Tree can only succeed if each and every family is fully invested in the project.