Written by ECAT Committee Category: Latest
Published on 03 November 2014

ECAT Committee Update Newsletter - November 2014

New ECAT Committee

The new ECAT Committee has been busy recently establishing itself following the September AGM and co-opting of new members onto the Committee. Being a parent run committee, it takes time to come up to speed and establish a clear picture of what the issues are and what needs to be looked at.

Your new Committee is a team of:

Graham Owens: Graham is the only returning member of the Committee post the AGM. A builder by trade, Graham is keen to work with the new Committee to keep things running smoothly.

Scott Earley: Scott is a first-time ECAT Committee member and comes to the team with a range of skills relating to project management. 

Paula Van Raalte: Paula is a first-time ECAT Committee member and comes to the team with a range of skills relating to project management and disputes resolution. 

We have been working hard to come up to speed and streamline the governance required for a successful ECAT. We haven’t assigned specific roles yet, we are working together as a team and sharing the duties. We are currently seeking for additional people to help out with the Committee, it’s a lot of work for just three people and any assistance people can provide would be greatly appreciated. We can’t offer you financial rewards, but a group of parents that enjoy each other’s company while providing a valuable service to the local Miramar community. 

If you feel you have a couple of hours a week/month to assist with Committee matters to help ECAT please email the current Committee (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ). 

HR Management Review 

Many will have also been aware of the Special General Meeting called in August to address a number of operational issues raised by group concerned parents. This was a turbulent time for ECAT with a number of issues surfacing and needing redress to keep the good work going and ECAT functioning.

Coming out of both the Special General Meeting and AGM was the need to do some thinking about how ECAT can best be structured and managed moving forward. The new Committee has thought long about how to best achieve this and engaged in a process to find what is best for ECAT.

The ECAT Committee has engaged and HR specialist to assist with a review of ECAT’s structure to ensure the on-going safe and financial success of ECAT. The results of this HR Management review will be communicated to all parents once the results have been reviewed by the Committee and recommendations considered.

What else is happening?

Policy and Procedure Update

Continuing some of the work the previous Committee, we have confirmed the latest ECAT Policies and Procedures. There is a hard-copy of ECAT Policies and Procedures next to the sign in/sign-out book. If you have any questions relating to the Policies or Procedures for ECAT, please don’t hesitate to ask one of a great team of staff for more information.

MSD Audit of ECAT

Occasionally the Ministry of Social Development will audit child care providers to ensure they are being run in accordance with their best practice guidelines. ECAT has an Audit scheduled in November to ensure this is the case. This ensures we are operating in accordance with the OSCAR guidelines. The Committee will provide an update as to the result of this audit once it has been completed and the results released. 

Miramar Community Centre

The Community Centre where ECAT bases its operation is changing hands. Currently operated by Wellington City Council, management will be transferred to the Miramar and Maupuia Community Trust during November. This means no real change to the operation of ECAT, although who we liaise with has changed. The Committee will be meeting with the Trust early November for an update on progress. If any significant messages come out of this, we will be sure to let everyone know.

The Committee are meeting with the new Miramar Community Centre management team on 20th November. We’ll keep you all posted.

Staff Comings and Goings

ECAT has had a couple of staff changes in recent weeks.

1. Natalia Carass will be leaving us on 7th November. Natalia has secured a full-time role which is great news. Natalia has been a wonderful member of staff to deal with and she will be missed by everyone in the ECAT team. The Committee wishes Natalia all the best in her new role.

2. Shona Rapira-Davies, our Acting ECAT Manager had her last day with the team on 31st October. The Committee wishes Shona all the best in her new role.

With the departure of two staff, the Committee will be advertising in the next week for a replacement Assistant Caregiver and following the result of the HR Management Review, a role to lead ECAT into the future. It is likely there will be a part-time Accounts Payable role available as well, but again the results of the HR Management Review will determine the shape of ECAT moving forward.

If anyone is interested or knows someone who might be suitable, please don’t hesitate to contact the Committee for further information. 

Please Note. Daniel and Katrina have kindly taken up the reigns in the interim. The Committee is very thankful to both Daniel and Katrina for taking this on to ensure the smooth and safe running of ECAT. If any parents have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact the ECAT Committee.

Our current team of dedicated care givers includes:

Supervisors: Daniel Mangin and Katrina Carass

Assistant Childcare Workers: Rachel Hercus, Petros Kambergiannis, Kone Aperila, and Natalia Carass (until Friday 7th November).

Administration notes

Contact Information

It’s always a good time to confirm both ECAT and parent contact address information as things do change over time and keeping up with all these changes can be difficult at the best of times. Please look out for the ECAT staff in the last week in the lead up to Christmas to confirm your contact details.

ECAT CommitteeThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

ECAT Team – The ECAT Team can be contacted on the ECAT email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . If you have any questions relating to the day-to-day running of ECAT, please email Daniel and Katrina, or see them in the Centre. All booking and cancellations should also be sent to this address. It’s important to give as much notice as possible. The other option is to call the team on the ECAT cell phone – 021 041 6561.

ECAT Accounts Payable – If you have any concerns relating to an invoice you have received, please send your query to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Recent Invoicing Errors

The ECAT Committee understands some errors have been made with recent invoicing. A number of parents have contacted the Committee highlighting they have been over-charged. Please check your statements and if you have any questions, please come back to the Committee. Email both the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. accounts and we’ll be sure to review your statements and invoices.

We apologise unreservedly for these errors. And please bear with us over the next couple of weeks while we catch up and get new arrangement in place.

Key dates coming up

Shut Down Dates for ECAT in 2014

The final ECAT dates for 2014 will be Friday 19th December 2014 which coincides with the end of the primary school calendar year. Please be sure to confirm your after school care requirements with the team in the coming weeks.

Holiday Program for 2015

ECAT will be running its School Holiday programme again next year. Starting from Tuesday, 20th January and running until Friday, 30th January 2015 - 9:00am – 3:00pm. It promises to be an exciting schedule of summer activities. Please register your interest with the ECAT Team so we have an idea of how many kids will be joining us. Bookings for the January 2015 Holiday program are open between 1st November and 19th December 2014. 

Enrolment for ECAT After School Program Term 1 - 2015

ECAT After school program will be starting up from Tuesday, 20th January 2015 in support of the January 2015 Holiday Program, then continuing through Term 1. Enrolment packs and more information will be available closer to the end of this year and on the upgraded ECAT website. Everything you need to know about enrolling for the new year will be in these packs.

Last words

The Committee would like to thank everyone for supporting ECAT and the team in recent months. We are coming to end of a very busy year and look forward to having a well-deserved break over the Christmas period.

Kind regards,

Graeme, Paula and Scott.

The ECAT Committee.