Winyu Early Childhood Service

An inclusive, family-focused early learning service

Spence Children’s Cottage is a home-like 25 place early childhood centre. It has a proud history as a community-focused service and was established with the help of the Women’s Electoral Lobby in 1974. We provide education and care for children age six weeks to five years.

Our flexible learning environments and mixed-age practices are inspired by leading international early childhood education research and innovation. We design our routines and curriculum with consideration to family practices at home, supporting each child’s routine and needs throughout the day. 

Our program has a strong child-led focus. Children attending Spence Cottage are actively involved in creating their learning journey based on their strengths and interests.

Our professional educators are committed to forming strong and meaningful bonds and interactions with each child and family at Spence Cottage.

When you use any of our YWCA Canberra children’s services programs, you help to support our community activities such as our housing programs, community development, youth engagement, and education to prevent domestic and family violence.

Learn more about what we provide and how fees are paid. To enrol, please complete the YWCA Canberra Spence Children’s Cottage Child Care Centre 2024 Enrolment Form.

Winyu Early Childhood Service is an innovative early learning centre in the heart of Gungahlin. The purpose-built centre features open plan spaces, state-of-the-art facilities and a gender-neutral curriculum.

We are a warm and welcoming centre where our learning spaces, routines and curriculum are designed to complement your family’s approach. We strongly promote children’s rights, autonomy, independence, curiosity and freedom to explore their world.

Our award-winning, inclusive service celebrates multiculturalism and individuality and supports a culture of diversity and inclusion. We celebrate and value our differences and support all families to participate in our community.

Fees for our children’s services contribute to supporting our community through housing programs, community development, youth engagement, and education to prevent domestic and family violence.

Learn more about what we provide and how fees are paid. To enrol, please complete the YWCA Canberra Winyu Child Care 2024 Centre Enrolment Form.


The Winyu team is a mixture of educators and staff from diverse cultural backgrounds including Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Russia, Korea, Myanmar, China, Philippines, Iran, Kenya and Thailand. This is a great opportunity for our service to build on our socio-cultural approach and include diverse perspectives in our teaching and learning on an ongoing basis.

We respect our differences and see this as our strength. There are many ways to do things and different perspectives and values that enrich our learning environment. We learn from each other and we aim to maintain a strong team of educators to promote the early years learning and development.

Children of all ages have access to a combination of early childhood teachers and professional educators as regularly as possible. With the arrival of the Educational Leader Ned, we now have two full-time early childhood teachers on site.

Educators have been thoughtfully allocated to each age group to enhance the balance of teaching and learning opportunities brought about by diverse knowledge and skills.

Director: Kiki
Kiki is originally from Hong Kong where she began her career teaching in a kindergarten. She went on to complete a bachelor’s degree of Early Childhood Education from the Education University of Hong Kong.

Her experience in Hong Kong working with people from many countries contributed to her focus on multiculturalism at Winyu.

Her philosophy is: “Children are little, but they are the people that you should never underestimate.”

“Children make me laugh, make me cry, make me understand that my role is important in their learning and development. They are our future and they are the people who own the future. To be a teacher, knowledge and experience are key factors so we can support children to learn and grow.”

Educational Leader / Assistant Director: Worawan (Ned)
Ned grew up in Thailand and has been working in the early childhood education sector since 2013, supporting young children with diverse cultural backgrounds and abilities. This included support children with special needs in a mainstream schooling environment and children with severe disabilities to feel a sense of belonging in their communities and to enjoy their daily life experiences.

Through this experience, Ned has gained significant skills in mentoring and guiding educators and pre-service teachers to develop a strong and deep understanding of what it feels like to be a part of a highly demanding yet rewarding early childhood environment.

Ned’s view on her work is: “I love being a part of the early childhood development and education as I truly believe it is the most important step in life. It’s the time of life that some people want it to pass quickly but I love to look closely and see how it changes and develops. It’s fascinating!”

At Winyu, we have a spacious, open-plan setting with state-of-the-art facilities.

Our outdoor environments include a beautiful and sustainable nature-based playground design. The combination of green plants, bamboo bushes, vegetable gardens, under-cover sandpit, reused tyres, re-purposed timber climbing frame, slide and garden kitchen are very exciting features of our outdoor environment.

Our indoor environment and resources to support inclusive play. Each area is carefully thought out to promote children’s independence in their play.

For example, the home corner in the Sky room is arranged in a way that promotes a sense of connection between the home and educational setting. It is open for children’s imagination to engage in pretend play and explore their social skills.

Winyu is unique in that we provide mixed-aged playtime every day where all children get to freely explore other room environments, play with different resources and engage with educators who are not predominantly work in their room.

We are a multicultural centre and respect diverse cultural backgrounds, beliefs, traditions, practices and perspectives. Our educators bring with them their valuable cultural knowledge and skills that enrich our learning environment. We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land and pay respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present and future. We are thankful to have had the opportunity to enjoy our time here with our colleagues, children, families and community members. and will continue to embrace the beauty of diverse cultures.

Our flexible learning environments and mixed-aged practices are inspired by leading international early childhood education research and innovation. We design our routines and curriculum with consideration to family practices at home, supporting each child’s individual routine and needs throughout the day.

We believe that young children learn through their interactions with the social world and the environment around them. To promote their learning and development, we build meaningful connections and engage with our local community spaces, people and organisations.

In the past, this has included visits from firefighters, families sharing their experiences related to their jobs, and working with Floriade to plant some beautiful tulip bulbs and annual seedlings in our backyard.

We feel very thankful for the families who have always been supportive of our practice, taking an extra mile to contribute their time and effort to make our learning more meaningful.

An inclusive, family-focused early learning service

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