Playcentre Aotearoa reported an increase of 21% in infant programmes delivered in the last year.

According to their Annual Report 2021, the organisation ran 243 infant programmes, with 3,515 pēpi (generally aged between 2-18 months) enrolled in their Space and Babies Can Play sessions, an increase of 21% over the previous year.

The organisation also saw an increase of 5.5% in membership numbers, with 14,313 tamariki enrolled in their mixed age sessions (0-6 years old).

Enrolments in their adult education programmes also increased. They reported a 48% increase in educational module completion, with 15,761 parents or caregivers attending 1,499 workshops as part of their adult education programme.

According to Playcentre Aotearoa Chief Executive, David Moger, “these outstanding results are despite the significant challenges Playcentre has faced due to Covid19 and the vaccine mandate, which had a disproportionate impact on us with our high numbers of volunteers who were included in the mandate.”

“We are incredibly proud of the 48% increase in completion of our adult education modules, which are designed to enhance the understanding of the education and care of tamariki across Aotearoa,” says Moger.

In 2021, Playcentre celebrated its 80th anniversary of valuing and affirming parents as the first and best educators of their children.

Because parents, whanau and caregivers attend Playcentre sessions the ratio of adults to children ranges from 1:5 to 1:3.

“This means there are generally more adults available to support children’s learning than at most other early childhood education services,” says Moger.

Moger also played tribute to the 12,330 parent volunteers which run the centres.

“Playcentre could not function without our 12,330 valued parent and whānau volunteers. Our volunteers are an integral part of Playcentre, providing support to other parent volunteers, tamariki and pēpi.”

Playcentre Aotearoa is a nationwide charity with over 400 early childhood education centres operating across the country.

Playcentre Aotearoa’s full Annual Report 2021 is available online.