Georgina Cosgrove’s story

| Mar 10, 2015

Well I’m going to share with you my own personal experience one which I feel many families all over Australia could probably relate to aspects of.
Thirty five years ago I fell in-love with a loving gentle man and we had two children together.
What I didn’t understand at the time was he had what’s known as “multiple addictions ” probably caused by his very difficult childhood which he continued to refuse to seek professional help with instead blocking how he felt using other methods. He has since passed away 5 years ago but this is my story.
We were a one income family during the early years so his intermittent gambling caused immense financial hardship for our little family. I really wanted to be a stay at home mum until our children were much older but I knew this was getting harder and harder. It wasn’t all bad we had our good times and he loved and spent quality time with our children . However I wanted to have more financial control over our living conditions so we didn’t have to struggle so much. So I began thinking about getting a job.
After searching everywhere for a good quality care setting I struck some problems the same problems families still face today 30 years later, cost, quality, vacancies, and location! Therefore I did the same thing everyone does now use neighbours your spouse or relative. I took on night jobs so my hubby could watch the kids whilst they slept. I had one child in kindy and one toddler. This was a struggle as I had no friends or relatives living close by as we had moved from Sydney to Wagga with the intention of providing our children with some healthy country living I had good neighbours thank goodness. I continued with this arrangement until my younger sister who was attending the local university at the time told me there was a child care centre on campus and talked me into enrolling in a teaching degree which in the long term would give me an education and financial independence and as fees could be paid through the tax system and uni student fees were low I suddenly had some hope for the future ( part of all this I thank the current Labour Party of the day for) . NONE OF THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN ACHIEVEABLE WITHOUT CHILDCARE!! All political parties MUST understand freedom for me came from affordable education, child care availability at a heavily reduced rate and I was provided with Austudy. All of these components have been slowly corroded away by following governments and had this experience been happening to me today I would not have been able to enrol in university, use the available child care centre on campus gain some financial independence and become a university trained Early Childhood Teacher. There was in place a huge safety net that swept people like me up and made it possible for us to improve our standard of living and contribute to productivity and society in general and isn’t that what we all want for Australia? I think that net has some big holes in it nowadays.
Yours sincerely Georgina Cosgrove

Georgina Cosgrove