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Company News, 2012-06-20, 12:00 PM

Groundbreaking: ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe to build company child day care center

ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG is building a new company child day care center at its Duisburg-Hamborn site. The company celebrated the start of building work today with a symbolic groundbreaking ceremony. “The company child day care center is a further component of our family-friendly HR policy aimed at improving the work-life balance,” said Executive Board member and Labor Director Dieter Kroll. “The center will enable our employees to combine their family and work commitments more easily – just a few short steps from their place of work.”

Opening planned for spring 2013

The day care center is being built on the site of the former vocational training center on Franz-Lenze-Strasse in Duisburg-Hamborn and is expected to open in spring 2013. The 500 square meter facility, which can be extended if required, will be run by an external operator: Following an intensive selection process, the company decided in favor of Duisburg-based Zaubersterne e. V., which already runs several child day care centers in Duisburg. Requirements focused on religious and political independence, educational philosophy, staff qualifications, individual support, freshly prepared daily meals and the option of extended opening times.

Educational philosophy: Technology and sciences

The educational philosophy for the new day care center will have a scientific/technological background. The children’s natural curiosity and thirst for knowledge will be nurtured by a special discovery room and a broad learning program, with a particular focus on science and technology. The center will also adopt a bilingual approach to introduce children to English from an early age.

The child day care center will offer year-round places for 40 children from four months to school age; 26 places will be provided for children under three. The kids will be looked after in three mixed-age groups by twelve full-time staff from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the latest; provision will also be made for emergency care. Costs to parents will be based on the standard fees set by the city of Duisburg.

Center an important element of “ProFuture”

The day care center represents an important element of the personnel program ‘ProFuture” initiated by ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe a few years ago with the aim of mastering the challenges of demographic change. “One of the challenges is to respond to the skills shortage on the labor market,” explains Kroll. As well as improving work-life balance, the core elements of ‘ProFuture’ include a drive, now completed, to reduce the average age of the workforce, an efficient company health management system to support the trend towards longer working lives, talent management and knowledge transfer. As part of improving work-life balance, ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG already offers help in finding suitable child care as well as providing a number of flexible ways for employees to stay involved in work during parental leave. In addition, the company has signed agreements with service providers who for example assist employees with housework or caring for family members with special needs.

Early August: ThyssenKrupp child day care center in Essen

Balancing family and work commitments is an important element of ThyssenKrupp’s human resources policy. As part of this, the Group’s Miniapolis child day care center will be opening on the grounds of the ThyssenKrupp Quarter in Essen at the beginning of August. ThyssenKrupp AG and operator DRK (German Red Cross) will offer high-quality, dependable care to around 100 children from four months to school age. Miniapolis will follow the principles of the Reggio Emilia approach to pre-school education, which centers on providing a supportive and enriching environment in which children learn through exploration and discovery. While not neglecting other educational areas, one particular focus will be on awakening their interest in science and technology – something to which ThyssenKrupp as an industrial group attaches particular importance. Together with DRK, ThyssenKrupp is thus also demonstrating its commitment to the community in the area of early childhood education.

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