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Hi burgo,

Many years ago I worked in an indoor centre like the one you are describing that host kid’s parties, as well as ‘casual visits’.

I was quite young when I worked there so can’t comment too much on the legalities, and whether my employers were even meeting them but I can share some of things we did:

1. Equipment Cleaning

All equipment was cleaned after each party was finished (so could be a couple of times a day) as a relatively quick clean (sweep, mop, wipe down etc) and bathrooms/toilets properly cleaned after each one. At least once a week the play equipment and the ball pit was more thoroughly cleaned – balls removed, each one wiped all over and pit vacuumed out and cleaned; They had a jumping castle there as well, which we cleaned with a mop regularly.

The weekly clean was usually done after hours or after last party on a Saturday/Sunday, as some fairly heavy duty disinfectants/bleaches etc were used, so best not have kids (especially the tiny ones) crawling over it and licking it! – The centre I worked at had separate equipment for 2 years and under to help avoid any injuries/accidents with the older kids on the rest of the equipment.

2. Providing Food/Drink

Where I worked didn’t have a ‘cafe’ so to speak. We served tea/coffee etc to parents in the casual visits and provided the ‘party food’ when a party was booked (standard kids party food & drink). We did no actual cooking on site, purely reheating of party foods like sausage rolls, franks, party pies etc.
I am not too sure whether there is a difference in terms of the requirements you would need to meet.

Working with the Kids

Whether legally required, I would recommend having a ‘working with children’ check done, simply because parents will obviously like to know that you have clear backgrounds and checks before being around their kids.

The centre I worked in, and others I have been too, all have signs that basically say parents are responsible for their children whilst there; that the business’s owners/employees are not there to supervise the children. If this is a similar format that you imagine, then there may not be a minimum no. of adults to kids requirements, as you are not ‘looking after them’.

If you visit http://www.business.gov.au/BusinessTopics/Registrationandlicences/pages/BusinessLicenceInformationServiceinyourstateorterritory.aspx you can select your location and search on any particular licenses and/or registrations that may apply to you in your business type and location.

In Victoria, if you will be producing food and similar, it appears you you will need food safety qualification and training, and some councils ask that you register your premises with them as ‘food’ supplying premises;

Hope the above helps. Good luck with it, I think it will be a lot of fun and great idea for a business :)

http://www.health.vic.gov.au/foodsafety/ – See this link for further info.