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AUCKLAND CITY HARBOUR NEWS, MAY 10, 2013
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Allergy-aware kindy found
By DANIELLE STREET
Welcome news: After a long search Rebecca Oliver has found a daycare centre that can accommodate her son Dylan's
Photo: JASON OXENHAM
Have you had trouble finding
childcare for a preschooler with
allergies? Tell us your story by
THE first day of kindy can be a
daunting milestone for many
parents, but for the parents of
children with severe allergies it can
be a truly scary prospect.
For three-year-old Dylan Oliver,
even remnants of peanut butter left
on a toy he touches can trigger
anaphylactic shock and result in a
trip to the hospital.
His allergies to wheat, dairy, eggs
and tree nuts are so severe that his
mother Rebecca felt unable to take
him to common preschooler
Ms Oliver hopes sharing their
story ahead of next week s Allergy
Awareness campaign will increase
understanding of the seriousness of
In the last two years our biggest
challenge is that when we d go out
and he would pick stuff up and put
his fingers in his mouth, she says.
He was just being a normal
toddler and getting into everything.
But we haven t been able to do
normal things like going to
playgroup because it was just too
However, Ms Oliver wanted her
son to have the benefits of
socialisation and stimulation and
went in search of a childcare facility
that could accommodate her son s
We looked at quite a few
kindies, she says.
It was really interesting because
I discovered there wasn t that much
support for the preschool age.
She found that few daycare
centres understood the importance
of handwashing after meals or the
wide variety of problematic foods.
After a lengthy hunt she
discovered a Newmarket-based
kindergarten that caters to several
children with allergies.
She says before Dylan s first day
last week the centre cleaned every
single toy, table and crayon.
The facility also provides meals to
stop sensitive items being brought
in.Ms Oliver says the centre s
thorough approach has instilled a
sense of confidence about sending
her son to daycare and it s worth the
I think there is just going to be
separation anxieties, rather than
any allergy issues, she says.
At least one in 10 babies born in
New Zealand will develop an
allergy, according to Allergy New
In the school sector public health
nurses are available to provide
training to school staff on
anaphylaxis and may be able to
help with healthcare plans for
students with food allergies.
But Ms Oliver says there needs to
be more support in early childcare
Allergy New Zealand chief
executive Penny Jorgensen says
generally there are limited
resources available to early
childhood services to help staff keep
children with food allergies well and
safe while in their care.
So pressure is often put back on
parents to provide the resource or
accept the risk to their child s
health, which is untenable, she
We are concerned that, as a
result, many children with food
allergies miss out on early
childhood education and parents
(lose) income because they are
unable to return to work, Ms
Allergy Awareness Week runs
from May 13 to 19.
Visit allergy.org.nz for more
Pitch condition could be a problem if more heavy rain falls
By JESS LEE
heavy wet spell
could bring the
sport big problems
this year after last
Another weekend of wild weather
could spell problems for Auckland s
footballers, who will not see the
effect of last weekend s downpours
Players were forced to abandon
30 matches as conditions deter-
iorated on May 4 and officials had to
postpone a further 20 on May 5.
Seven of the 15 Lotto Northern
League games scheduled were
abandoned, including the premier
league derby between Bay Olympic
and Three Kings United at Olympic
Park which was called off at
Mt Albert-Ponsonby s first
division duel with Hibiscus Coast
lasted just 10 minutes at Anderson
Auckland Football Federation
chief executive David Parker says
because of the long, dry summer
many Auckland grounds were dried
up before the rain. None have
degraded to a point of closure yet.
There are some precautionary
closures for training, he says.
With a drying spell forecast for
most of the week we are hoping
competition schedules for the week-
end will be largely unaffected.
The Auckland Council will advise
competition officials today of any
grounds that are closed or those
with restricted play hours. This
may mean times or venue changes
but games will only be postponed as
a last resort if no suitable grounds
can be found.
There is a risk that the underly-
ing conditions from the dry summer
could still have an impact on the
season, Mr Parker says.
Soil moisture levels are improv-
ing, grass growth is good as soil
temperatures are still high, and
cracks and drainage channels on
fields are closing up or have been
filled by the council using sand.
Mr Parker says steady rainfall is
still needed for continued grass
recovery and increased cover.
With each week that passes we
get nearer to normal and the risk of
a really badly affected season
decreases just a little.
But another prolonged heavy wet
spell could still bring the sport
bigger than average problems this
year, he says.
We are not yet back to normal,
though there is a risk that players
and football families may think we
Artificial grounds are part of the
solution to improving conditions, he
Three Kings United general man-
ager Steven Reid says it is always
disappointing to call off matches
and the club is still eager for an
Auckland Council s Sports Field
Capacity Development programme
will see $190 million invested in all
three winter codes to 2021, includ-
ing 37 artificial fields.
Two artificial pitches at Seddon
Fields in Western Springs are due
to open in four weeks.
Teams can check auckland
football.org.nz later this afternoon to
see if their game is as scheduled,
has been moved or postponed.
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