Child Watch Info & Policies

Come Wonder! Explore!

Monday – Friday 8:00 am - 1:30 pm 

Saturday 8:00 am -12:00 pm 

If your child is ages 6 weeks to 6½ years, free from illness or communicable disease, they can visit Child Watch for up to 2½ hours each day while their parents utilize the YMCA.

Service is free to Y members; $2 per hour/child if you’re a program participant.
Children are taken on a first come, first served basis. Space is limited.
Make sure you bring your Y card with you when you check in and check out.

We can’t wait to see you here!


Pick up a copy of the Child Watch brochure for complete info and tips for a positive experience for your child.

Signing In: Adults are required to show their membership card when checking in and out. Children must be signed in, with their food, personal belongings & themselves labeled. Children may only be checked out by the person who brought them in. Parents must leave in writing, all locations they will be in while children are in Child Watch. Under no circumstances may a parent leave the Y while their child is in Child Watch.

Holidays: Child Watch will be closed on: Labor Day, the week before public school starts, Thanksgiving & the day after, December 24-26th, New Years Eve & New Years Day, Memorial Day, Good Friday, & July 4th.

Food: Snacks and drinks for your child are allowed. Please do not bring in nuts, peanuts or peanut products. Hot foods & refrigerated foods not in re-sealable containers will be disposed of once a child expresses that they are done eating.

Toys: All Child Watch toys are cleaned & checked for safety regularly. Please leave toys, coins, candy, gum and other small objects at home.

Illness: All children must be current with immunizations. We cannot accept a child if they have had symptoms of illness within the past 24 hours, such as (but not limited to): fever, green discharge from the body, diarrhea, cough, lethargy, unexplained rashes, and/or vomiting. Children suspected of illness will be sent home & asked not to return for at least 24 hours after symptoms are gone.

Medications: We are not allowed to distribute medications of any kind. This includes cough drops and diaper ointment.

Accidents/Injury: Parents will be notified upon pick up or immediately if needed. If a child bites, they will be sent home for the day.

Crying/Upset Children: In the best interest of all of the children in Child Watch, it is our policy to ask parents to pick their child up when that child is inconsolable for 10 minutes.

Diapers: Parents are responsible for leaving their children in Child Watch wearing a clean diaper. They will need to leave an extra diaper in Child Watch for their child’s use. If a diaper has not been provided by the parent, we will provide one at a cost of $1, but only if that size is available. Sorry, we cannot accept a diaper from your home in ‘trade’ for sanitary reasons.

Bathroom: Accidents happen. We understand that. However, due to sanitary issues, children being potty trained must wear pull ups/plastic cover ups in Child Watch. If a young, potty trained child has a toileting ‘accident’ in Child Watch, we will request that they wear pull ups or cover ups over their underclothes for another 2 weeks when visiting Child Watch. This will hopefully give that child a chance to master their potty training while in this environment.

Clothing: Children able to walk unassisted must wear footwear.

Emergencies: There will be at least one Y caregiver trained in CPR, blood borne pathogens, and first aid in Child Watch at all times.
Emergency Procedures (Loss of consciousness/serious injury/medical emergency):
1. A parent will transport the child if available.
2. The Director or Y Professional staff will transport the child and have the parent meet them.
3. The Rapid City Ambulance Service will transport the child in extreme emergencies.

Child Abuse: Cases of suspected neglect or child abuse will be reported to the proper authorities as outlined by state law. If a parent has been drinking and arrangements have not been made for someone else to pickup your child, the center is required by law to report this to the police department.