Professional Planners

What you need to know for your next event

In today’s fast-paced world, meeting planners often find themselves pulled in multiple directions, working with limited support staff, and facing ever-tightening deadlines when orchestrating events, meetings, and conventions nationwide. They strive to secure the best vendors, competitive prices, and ideal locations to ensure your event’s success.

Why plan for children?

Parents deserve the peace of mind to focus on their work without distractions or worries, especially during meetings and conventions with limited time. ACCENT’s mission is to provide every parent with the assurance that their child is safe, secure, and having a fantastic time!

Fostering the confidence needed for both parents and children to separate during these events demands a unique blend of knowledge and experience. ACCENT possesses the expertise gained from years of event planning, tour design, and curriculum development, ensuring that our children’s programs stand out through meticulous attention to detail.

Unlock the benefits of childcare programs

Children’s programs have become an essential service for business travelers, and an increasing number of corporations recognize the significance of providing childcare during meetings and conventions.

By choosing ACCENT, your staff is relieved of the hassle of seeking makeshift solutions. ACCENT essentially offers a comprehensive, temporary children’s program that seamlessly complements your offerings to members. What’s more, ACCENT excels in promotions, logistics, and risk management.

  • Championing Family Values: Demonstrates your organization’s commitment to family values.
  • Liability Mitigation: Reduces liability concerns that may arise when attendees bring their children on-site.
  • Boosting Membership and Attendance: Enhances membership and attendance rates, especially among younger members.
  • Expanding Event Dimensions: Adds a broader dimension to your meetings and events.
  • Enhancing Focus and Peace of Mind: Provides peace of mind and enables attendees to concentrate better on the event.
  • Reflecting Cutting-Edge Practices: Demonstrates your organization’s forward-thinking approach.
  • Creating Sponsorship Opportunities: Opens up sponsorship prospects, enhancing the event’s financial support and success.

15 things meeting planners should consider when choosing a childcare provider for an event

15 criteria professional meeting planners should consider when choosing a childcare provider for an event

  1. Recommendations: Ask the convention bureau at the meeting site to recommend local and national childcare providers. Also, check your PCMA directory.
  2. Insurance: A minimum of $3 million general liability is needed. Read your association’s policy to be sure the proposed program is not among exclusion.
  3. Waiver or Release: Ask your provider for a waiver or release and have your legal staff review it.
  4. Standards: Make sure the provider in your destination state meets all daycare standards, from staffing to physical requirements.
  5. Staff-Child Ratio: Look for a favorable child–adult ratio. The National Association for the Education of Young Children proposes a child-to-staff ratio of 3:1 for infants, 4:1 for toddlers, and 6:1 for children up to eight years old.
  6. Security: Check–in and check–out procedures are very important and should be strictly enforced using signatures, proper identification, etc. A security guard is recommended outside of the activity room door.
  7. Emergencies: Ask your provider how emergencies are handled. Use a medical authorization form for emergencies. An on–site nurse is recommended for large programs.
  8. Staff: Ask about the provider’s staff requirements. Are they CPR-certified? Do they have education degrees or experience in child care centers? Do they understand children’s needs? Find out who your staff contact will be on-site and how you can reach your contact during the day and after hours.
  9. Location: The child care center should be located near emergency exits but not close to heavy traffic areas. A minimum of 50 square feet per child is recommended. Bathroom accessibility is very important. The building must have water sprinklers and an evacuation plan should be posted.
  10. Communication: the provider should be able to reach meeting staff and/or convention services at all times.
  11. Staff Orientation: A minimum two–hour orientation is recommended for child care staff to outline check-in/ check-out procedures, child care procedures, and familiarization with the location. The bigger the program, the more detailed the orientation.
  12. Logistics: Think about who will handle crib rental costs, audiovisual equipment, moving of children’s supplies, meals, and snacks, registration badges, etc.
  13. Parent Orientation: Provide as much information as possible to the parents. Designate staff to answer questions or refer to childcare providers with calls.
  14. Cost: Remember that child care and children’s tours are more expensive than spouse tours. Think about how costs will be met- individual members, sponsorships, subsidies, or grants.
  15. Evaluation: The provider should help the planner to establish a method of evaluation.

In the realm of children’s programs, the consistency of service is of paramount importance. Parents both appreciate and anticipate a level of service that remains unwavering year after year.

Leave it all to us

ACCENT Program Managers shoulder the responsibility of overseeing the safety and security of the entire program. Every Program Manager holds certifications in CPR and Pediatric First Aid. ACCENT diligently conducts comprehensive criminal background checks on all our employees for the past seven years within their city of residence, and we do not charge for this service. Our employees receive extensive training upon joining, equipping them with a thorough understanding of all ACCENT policies and procedures.

Our dedicated staff is exclusively composed of ACCENT employees, and we ensure comprehensive coverage through our worker’s compensation insurance in all states.

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The Do's and Don'ts for Childcare Programs

Decide whether to hire an outside firm, use an established hotel program, or run the program yourself.

Plan well in advance. What kind of activities will be planned? How many children are coming? How old are they/ What kind of schedule will you need (half or full-day child care)?

Decide who’s picking up the tab. Make sure attendees know what costs they’re responsible for.

Provide children with registration packets and badges. Their printed program should be included in the overall convention program, so parents and children know where the other is at all times.

Set an age limit on children. Remember that the younger the child, the more supervision is required and therefore the more costly the program.

Divide child attendees by age category. Two-to-four, five-to-eight, nine-to- 12 and 13 and up. Give the younger ones structure; avoid heavily structured programs for teens. Do give teens a “hangout” place to meet other teens.

Hire qualified, licensed supervisors. Avoid too many off-property activities to limit the possibility of liability suits.

Make the program educational. Consider tying in with established programs such as zoo’s animal programs or science experiments.

Be careful about religious beliefs, particularly planning activities around the holiday season.

Make the children’s program mandatory.

Provide any entertainment that is not considered family-oriented.

Think that holding a children’s program limits your site selection.

Every event can be family-friendly with AOCA!

On-site programs, field trips, holiday events, and youth hospitality suites