In 1994, Colac was assessed by the Department of Health and family services as being one of the highest needs area in Victoria for a child care service. The figures indicated that there were six hundred children, in Colac, under the age of four years old with both parents working.
Two friends, decided to open a private childcare facility in the Colac Otway Shire. Michelle Danks, a mothercraft nurse and Cathy Thompson, a primary teacher embarked on a dream to build a high quality childcare Centre.
After conducting many community surveys and a business plan, a site was chosen to build the first child care Centre in Colac. After looking at many properties in the Central Business District, 23 Hart St, Colac was purchased. Its prime location, homely, inviting spaces and large indoor and outdoor area were exact-ly what we had been looking for. The name on the house was Millville, named by the Kinkaid family who moved in from the local timber mills. The gold sign on the front seemed an appropriate name for our Childcare Centre. Cathy’s father, Brian Lloyd undertook the major building task of turning the house into a Childcare Centre. On June 26th, 1995 our Centre officially opened. It was registered as a 30 place Centre and started with 14 enrolments and 7 staff.
In 1996 Cathy and Phillip Thompson became the sole owners of Millville Childcare Centre.
In 1997 Millville Childcare Centre was awarded the best new business in the Colac Otway Shire Business awards. In 2000, one of our original employees, Narelle Melville won the employee of the Year.
Large waiting lists and strong community demand, led to a large extension to our premises in 2008. We purchased 25 Hart St and the existing house was sold and relocated to Birregurra. A new purpose built facility was completed and we registered as a 60 place Centre in January, 2009 . By June our Centre was again at full capacity and our waiting lists reached high numbers again.
In 2012, we purchased 27 Hart St. In May 2012, we applied for a Federal Government Grant to build a purpose built facility to offer a fully funded 4/5 year old kindergarten program. In October 2012 our beautiful new facility opened. We had a spacious, lovely kindergarten room, with a purpose built art room, a kitchen, community room, large veranda, fantastic outdoor space and a carpark. In 2013 we had our first official kindergarten group, with 26 children and 3 staff.
In 2014 we achieved Exceeding National Standards in all areas with an overall rating of exceeding national standards.
Due to high demand for our kindergarten, in 2016 we increased to, two kindergarten groups and we continue to have run two groups in both the 3 year old room and the 4 year old room.
In 2017, we were the first Centre in regional Victoria to be awarded a Centre of Excellence.
In 2021 we decided to change our name from Millville Child Care to Millville Children's Centre to include our kinder program.
* Update: In 2024 we will be completing work to join the house on 21 Hart St to 23 Hart st, this extension will not impact licenced places but will include new areas for meals, sleeping and toileting in the Under 3 area's as well as separate access to both under 2 rooms. It will also increase the size of the current staff area with new offices and extension of the current staff room.