by Kristen Booth
THIS year, Emerald's Borilla Community Kindergarten is celebrating its 25th birthday.
Commencing operations in July 1992 and officially opening on September 12, 1992, the kindergarten has provided an educational start for many children throughout the region.
Borilla Community Kindergarten is a community based not-for-profit kindergarten with a focus on supporting children with additional needs and from diverse backgrounds.
In addition to providing a quality early childhood educational program, the kindergarten focuses on early invention strategies to enable all children's success at school.
With only 50 registered children when it first opened, the kindergarten now has 135 enrolments shared over six weekly classes.
Borilla Community Kindergarten director Jenny Finlay has been with the kindergarten for 21 years, and has seen some of the most significant changes.
"The change in the funding model is one of the most positive changes,” Mrs Finlay said.
"We are now with Gowrie Inc and this was really positive.”
The kindergarten opened as a double unit, but in December 2012, it received a State Government grant to build an additional unit, with the third unit open in 2014.
They have also seen the addition of a multi-purpose room, major kitchen and toilet upgrades as well as the installation of full air conditioning.
Mrs Finlay said the best part of working at Borilla was the children and the families.
"I've taught children, and their children have come back,” she said.
"It's so lovely, you feel very much apart of their story.
"It's very family orientated and there is very highly qualified staff.”
The team at Borilla Community Kindergarten celebrated the milestone event with a true style birthday party.
Mr Finlay said they celebrated with the staff, children and their families.
"It was quite a nice low-key celebration with a morning tea and a cake,” she said.
"There were the children and their families, and even some from other classes.
"We enjoyed it and the children did too and that's the main thing.”