Meals form a significant part of a child’s daily routine. Mealtimes within the centre are set to a regular schedule but individual dietary (e.g. vegetarian) and allergy (e.g. no milk, eggs, wheat products etc.) requirements will be accommodated. Children who are hungry between meals will be offered small nutritionally appropriate snacks.
Please note that all food is provided by the centre. Due to high risk of allergies, no outside food is to be brought into the centre, unless approved by the Director for strict dietary/ religious requirements. The children will be provided with a nutritious morning and afternoon snack and a substantial midday meal prepared by an experienced Cook.
Menus will be displayed on the kitchen notice board. Meals are prepared with fresh ingredients and follow Get up and Grow guidelines which is a practical guide to meeting the food and nutritional needs of children. In accordance with National Quality Standards, Meela’s menus are reviewed and updated to supply a variety of foods and include cultural recipes. The review process includes feedback and suggestions from parents/guardians, educators and children.
Children will be encouraged to try new foods and likes, dislikes, religious and cultural beliefs will always be respected.
If your child has any food allergies, strong dislikes or special dietary requirements it is important that you discuss this with the Centre Director, Food Coordinator and Room Educators. To reduce risk of allergic reaction we do not serve eggs, dairy or wheat products to children under the age of 6 months. The centre can adapt to a dairy-free diet by omitting all dairy based foods, and children can be provided with soy or lactose-free alternatives.
Water is readily available throughout the day. Children in the babies’ room are offered water from their water bottles throughout the day.
Parents/guardians with children on infant formula are required to provide the original container of formula and an empty bottle per feed required. Educators will then make up the bottles as required and inform the parents when the formula runs low. Please clearly label bottles and formula container with your child’s full name. Formula labels must be clearly visible where directions and expiry is easily accessible.
The centre takes great care to ensure that all babies’ bottles are hygienically stored. Bottles will be rinsed out after use and returned to your child’s bag for appropriate cleaning and sterilization.
Where breast milk is supplied please ensure that there is enough for the day and the container is clearly labelled with child’s name and date. Please inform Room Educators whether you require it to be stored in the fridge or the freezer.
Please be aware that we are an Allergy Aware Centre and NO food is to be brought into the premises with the exception of authorisation by the Centre Director or Food Coordinator.