Graduating as a Parent in the Life Sciences
Justus Liebig University supports student and graduating parents with a variety of different child care services. JLU’s Family Service Office (“Familienservicestelle”) is open to all graduate students who have questions about graduating while raising a family. Parents-to-be and graduate students with children can obtain extensive information, practical tips and helpful advice in the following areas:
Availability of child care services
Mealtimes and accommodation with children
Exchanging views and making contact with other graduating student pare
You can drop in without an appointment during their office hours: Monday to Friday from 12.00 to 14.30 in Otto-Behaghel-Str. 25. Alternatively, you can make a private appointment (e-mail, tel.: 0641 40008-166).
In the following you will find an overview of JLU's child care services:
Welcome pack for freshers with children and graduate students with newborn babies at JLU
JLU’s Family Service Office provides for student parents, beginning their studies at JLU, a welcome package. It contains brochures, a drawing pad, pencils and € 50.00. If you are already enrolled as a graduate student at JLU and have a new born child, a similar package is available to you.
You can collect the welcome packages from the Family Service Office by showing your child’s birth certificate, a current enrolment certificate (“Studienbescheinigung”) and your ID card or passport.
Regular child care
KIWIS daycare centre ("Kindertagesstätte KIWIS")
The KIWIS daycare centre in Alter Steinbacher Weg 32 (close to the main student restaurant, Phil I and the Business/Law Campus) caters for twenty children of graduate students at JLU and THM (“Technische Hochschule Mittelhessen”) aged between 10 months and 3 years in two groups from 7.30 to 17.30 from Monday to Friday.
Application: At the Family Service Office after the birth of your child.
Childminder network (“Tagesmütternetz”)
For graduating parents at JLU and THM, Student Services, in cooperation with the association Parents Helping Parents (“Eltern helfen Eltern e.V.”), have established a network of childminders. Depending on individual child care needs, graduate students can be put in touch with qualified childminders and can obtain an allowance of € 1 an hour for a maximum of 20 hours a week over two semesters to help cover childminding costs.
Application: At the Family Service Office even before the birth of your child.
Flexible child care and holiday child care
Babysitter allowance (“Babysitterzuschuss”)
Graduate students at JLU who, in addition to regular childcare, need a babysitter because they have to attend a course, are taking examinations or are seeking paid employment or because the regular childcare facilities are unavailable during a holiday period or outside opening hours can obtain an allowance of € 5.50 an hour for a maximum of 81 hours per semester to help cover childcare costs.
Application: At the Family Service Office for each semester.
Emergency babysitter fund ("Babysitter-Notfalltopf")
If a child is seriously ill and cannot therefore be catered for by the regular childcare facilities but needs to be looked after at home, graduating parents at JLU can also apply for an allowance of €5.50 an hour to help cover the cost of a babysitter.
Application: At the Family Service Office as needed.
A full-day holiday childcare service catering for children between the ages of 6 and 12 years is available to graduate students and employees of the two universities in Giessen in the weeks when lectures and school holidays overlap. JUSTUSkids is available regularly in the Easter, autumn and summer holidays.
Application: At the Family Service Office a few weeks before the start of the holiday childcare.
Mealtimes and accommodation with children
Child-sized meals ("Kinderteller")
Graduate Students’ children can eat free of charge at all Student Services canteens and cafeterias that serve a warm midday meal on presentation of a “Child-sized meals pass” (“Kinderteller-Ausweis”).
Obtaining a child-sized meals pass: From the Advice and Service Department ("Abteilung Beratung & Service", Ms Verna) on presentation of the child’s birth certificate and a current enrolment certificate.
The “Unterhof” student residence, block 10, in Giessen, has 24 low-rent family apartments for young families and double apartments for single parents.
Application: Student Residence Department ("Wohnheimabteilung"), Otto Behaghel Str. 23, tel.: 0641 -302/ -303/ -304/ -305
Information, contact details and exchanging views
“Studying and graduating with children” community (“Netzwerk Studieren mit Kind”)
The community organises regular information events in semester time. No charge is made for attending the events, which are a way of obtaining information about all services provided by Student Services and its cooperation partners. External speakers (e.g. from the German Child Protection Agency or pro familia) give presentations and student as well as graduate parents have an opportunity to get to know each other and to exchange views and helpful tips. Children are warmly welcome at all events and childcare is free of charge.
The “Studying and graduating with children” community’s email mailing list ensures that you are kept up to date with all key information and receive invitations to events for graduating parents. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, simply send an email. (Please note: this newsletter will be provided mostly in German. If you need a translation, contact the newsletter’s sender or the GGL office).
If you want to make use of JLU’s services for graduating parents, you must be enrolled at JLU. If you are not enrolled as a graduate student, you are not entitled to these benefits.
In case you’re coming from outside the EU, there might be some extra regularities you have to consider. The Family Service Office will take this into consideration when you apply for their different services.
Further links (German only)
Studying and graduating with children (“Kind und Studium”): JLU’s Student Services’ pages for student and graduating parents; also containing information on services provided by Giessen authorities
Services by the association Parents Helping Parents (Non-university services)
The association Parents Helping Parents (“Eltern helfen Eltern e.V.”) not only offers a childminder network in cooperation with the two universities in Giessen, but also has a pool of childminders and babysitters at their disposal. If you need a childminder on a regular basis or a babysitter for single occasions, or would like to get some information and advice about that, you can contact them. Additionally, they offer various other services. In the open Parent Child Café, mothers or fathers can make new acquaintances in a relaxed atmosphere. Small children get into contact with other children of the same age and find new playmates. Two times a week in the morning, there is a mini kindergarten for children from one to three years. Once a week, there is an English playgroup, particularly for families with English-speaking children. Twice a month, they offer a meeting for single parents who would like to get into contact with other single parents. They also provide a meeting for families with black children once a month.
The project “Hallo Welt” (Hello World) supports parents of newborns and accompanies them until their third year of life. In their Hello World Café, mothers or fathers can meet other parents with their babies and enjoy breakfast together. Besides these different opportunities for getting into contact with other parents and children, “Eltern helfen Eltern” not only organizes a bazar for children’s clothes and toys, but also a series of talks in which a broad range of family, children, parenting and health issues are addressed. Their office is located in Rooseveltstr. 3 and their office hours are Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 12.00. You can contact them via phone (0641 33330) or e-mail. For more information, please have a look at their website.