Reliable Childcare for the Bayside Community

When Maria Domenikos, director of Bayside Daycare and Afterschool, began providing childcare to Queens residents, it quickly became clear that her expertise was rooted in an upbringing centered on caring for children.
One of the oldest children in a large family, Domenikos says she grew up in a small village in Greece looking out for younger children and teaching them love and respect. Helping to run her family’s small farm, Domenikos saw to it that her younger brothers and sisters were fed, dressed and entertained each day. Known as the “mother of the village,” Domenikos says that her dream was to become a teacher because of the joy she found in caring for children, but her family was not able to send her to school in the city to study. This did not stop her from pursuing childcare as a profession. “Like my father, I always say it is never too late in life to do something that makes you happy,” she explains.
So after moving to New York in 1978, Domenikos attended school and learned to speak English with the goal of opening her own daycare center in Queens. Domenikos says that she faced many challenges and did not receive much support from those she queried, so she began her business by babysitting while she stayed home raising her own two children. “This was the first step for me,” Domenikos says. “I did that for several years until my kids finished school.”
After meeting a friend who shared an interest in childcare, Domenikos found the help that she needed to start Bayside Daycare and Afterschool. She filled out an application, obtained a license and began advertising for what would become one of Bayside’s most trusted childcare services. Domenikos ensure that all of her assistants at the daycare are certified in childcare to provide the safest environment possible for children. Domenikos and her staff not only provide a safe and fun environment for children, but also offer breakfast, lunch and snacks, with Greek food being a specialty.
Bayside Daycare and Afterschool has grown so much in recent years through parent recommendations and word of mouth, that Domenikos says she is planning to expand the center onto another floor at 42-11 Clearview Expressway. Parents can call 718-279-9866 for further information. Domenikos says, “I am very happy to serve my community and I am thankful for all the people who trust me to have their kids in my care.”

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