FDC coordinator Mariam Shahid honoured with finalist position in national awards
Family day care (FDC) coordinator Mariam Shahid, who works at Bright Sun Family Day Care in Hoppers Crossing, has been selected as one of four finalists in the 2021 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards.
The award winner will be announced at the 2021 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards Gala Dinner, to be held in Canberra 26 February 2022.
Ms Shahid spoke with local journalist Alesha Capone about her work in the FDC sector, her nomination, and her daily role.
Having worked with Bright Sun Family Day Care for over three years, Ms Shahid was drawn to the sector when she arrived as a migrant to Australia with no family support.
“I was after a career which offers a culturally safe environment and flexible work arrangements, so early childhood education and care was the right choice for me,” she explained.
While completing her Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care, she discovered her passion for playing a foundational role in the lifelong learning journey of a child.
“Soon after the completion of my studies, I was offered a role as FDC coordinator and haven’t looked back since then,” she added, saying she loves the freedom within the role.
“I work full-time on a flexible schedule, both in and out-of-office, and my director trusts me to produce high-quality work and results.”
“I am a people person and working as FDC coordinator has offered me an opportunity to work with educators, children, and families from diverse backgrounds. I have met some wonderful people through this job.”
The diversity of the work also appeals, and no day is like any other, dealing with potential educator’s inquiries, registration and induction of educators, initial home safety assessment, monitoring and support visits to educator’s approved FDC residences, dealing with parents, and placement of children.
“I am always focused on ensuring quality outcomes for children, educators and families, which makes me feel good when the day is done. Another important aspect of my role is supporting the mental health and wellbeing of educators, children and families,” Ms Shahid shared, touching on the challenging environment the sector has faced in recent years.
To bolster mental health and wellbeing, Bright Sun is working with Be You to develop a positive, inclusive and resilient learning community where every child, young person, educator and family can achieve their best possible mental health.
“My Director Dr Amsha Nahid is not only my boss but my mentor as well. She pushes me to challenge myself in my career. I love having a voice and she listens to my ideas and our coordination unit then works together to implement those ideas,” Ms Shahid added, also praising fellow coordinators Huma, Rumaisa, Amber and Sarwat who “always support, encourage, and guide me which has helped me achieve many professional milestones. They are not only my colleagues, but I also consider them as part of my family.”
Bright Sun works with almost 90 FDC educators based across several locations in Melbourne.
“I am honoured and grateful for being selected as a national finalist in the 2021 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards among a group of such incredibly talented women,” Ms Shahid said.
“The fact that my hard work has been recognised is an excellent morale-booster that will encourage me to continue doing my best work. With so many FDC services and early childhood professionals around you, it becomes easy to believe the work that you’re doing is going unnoticed. But this nomination means that my hard work, dedication and demanding schedule of being an FDC coordinator pays off.”
“I hope that the nomination will inspire and encourage my mentees as well as young women and girls of colour. I encourage them to pursue their passion no matter what obstacles they face. This experience has motivated me to share my story and knowledge with even more women looking to grow in the early childhood sector.”
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