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External childcare: what are the options?

In addition to child day care centres, there are other external childcare options open to parents.


A childminder will look after your child during the day. Most childminders belong to a childminders association, which guarantees the quality of the services offered.

For more information, please contact the Tagesfamilien Schweiz/Accueil familial de jour Suisse association.

Contact your local childminders association

Out-of-school childcare

Lunchtime club

In many places, childcare is provided for schoolchildren during the lunch break to ensure they get a simple and balanced meal, and there is supervision for the younger ones. This service is often organised by the schools themselves, by parents groups or private or semi-public organisations. There are different forms of lunchtime childcare in the different cantons and communes.

Full-time schools

More and more full-time day schools are being established. These are schools in which the children are supervised outside of lessons – before school begins, during lunchtime and after school.

If you would like to know more, please contact the your local school authorities or social services. You will find contact details below.

Out-of-school childcare services

Children’s centres

A children’s centre can look after your child for a few hours a day (usually two or three), but they do not accept children for full days.

You can get more information about children’s centres in your region from your local commune.

Contact your commune’s child and youth service

Childcare service when you or your child is ill

Your child may suddenly fall ill and so cannot go to school/day care centre, or you yourself cannot look after your child due to illness. In this case you can contact the Red Cross in your canton, who can send someone to help you at home. This service varies from canton to canton but basically someone will look after your children, play with them, prepare their meals and give them any medicines necessary.

This service is available for children up to the age of 12. Costs are calculated according to income, and you may be able to claim the money from your medical insurer.