When the family comes too
For parents in Germany it is often not very easy to organise the course of the day to the satisfaction of all family members – particularly when both parents work.
When one child is still in kindergarten but the other already goes to school, the week has to be very carefully planned through. Who fetches whom and from where? Who does the shopping? And who looks after a sick child? Nevertheless, many parents manage to pull off this feat day after day.
Parents can claim child benefit for their children living in Germany until they reach the age of 18. It is granted on applying to the Federal Employment Agency. If your child is less than two years old, you can even obtain a child-raising allowance. You can obtain further details from your local authority.
Childcare and nursery schools
There is a shortage of places in local authority and church-run nursery schools and after-school care centres, with frequently long waiting lists. For this reason, some companies and universities have set up their own kindergartens. And child minders are now available in every town and city who will look after your children in their own home and garden, and lovingly care for them. Ask other parents or your paediatrician if they can recommend someone.
You can also obtain details about nursery schools and child minders from your local authority’s youth welfare office. If you need a babysitter, you can place an advertisement in local newspapers or community newssheets, leave a note in schools, church community halls or maternity centres, and browse through online babysitter portals.
Anyone who raises a child alone is reliant on the support of friends and relatives – and it is precisely that which is missing at the beginning. Instead look for support from people who are in the same situation as yourself and get in touch with other single parents. Single parents can make contact through associations, self-help groups and your children’s kindergarten or school.