Community Subscriber
Oakland, CA
510-658-7353 (Main) 510-658-0381 (Child Care Referrals)

BANANAS is a nonprofit child care resource and referral agency serving Northern Alameda County. We provide free education and resources to families and child care providers.

Parent Questions

Seeking infant daycare starting in May(4 responses)

Parent Reviews

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Archived Reviews: 

May 2013

RE: I'm looking for a new mom's support group

I've attended new moms groups at Bananas, Support Group for Mothers, and Kaiser Oakland. I really liked the Bananas group and we continued to meet afterwards, but things sort of fizzled out when everyone went back to work...

July 2012

RE: Babysitting classes for a 13 year old

My daughter took a great babysitting class and a CPR/first Aid class through Bananas on Claremont. It was reasonable and well-taught. mom of baby lover

Have you tried BANANA's in Oakland?, (510) 658-0381 Love BANANAs

March 2010

RE: Where to take a parenting class?

Bananas has a group parenting class on Wednesday, March 3, 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm Living With Threes And Fours Meg Zweiback returns to Bananas to address the questions and concerns of parents of three and four year olds. Learn how to encourage and preserve the spontaneity and curiosity of this delightful age group while teaching them to cooperate. Sign Up Limited child care is available for this workshop. The fee is $5 per child. Please call 510-658-7353 to register.

Note: If this class is not suited for you or you want one on one classes call Meg Zweiback directly 510-836-1450. She is a specialist in all parent/child issues and she is wonderful with children. oakland parent

Bananas, located on Claremont Ave in Oakland. From their website: '[we] are a non-profit support agency... We provide free parenting information, workshops ...' Looking at their calender, they have classes such as 'Positive Parenting', 'Living with Threes and Fours', 'Children with Challenging Behavior' And if you miss a class, I bet they have a free hand-out or other referrals. Mom of Two  

May 2009

RE: Babysitter classes for young teen

My son took a babysitting class and a babysitting first aid class at Bananas last summer. It was inexpensive and well done. Carrie


Re: How to Find Childcare
All I can say is--Bananas! (A free child care resource, referral, and support service). They are the goddesses of those needing help in figuring out how-to do anything re: childcare. Their focus is Alameda County--because that's where their funding comes from--but El Cerrito squeaks in a bit around the edges. Set aside a couple of hours and go there if you can (to get your how-to talk & handouts and have time to look through cards of family/center/in-home providers). Call them if you can't. They won't find childcare for you but they'll give you the tools to find it for yourself. (Caveat: there are no quick and easy solutions, but there are good solutions.)

You will get better info and be less frustrated if you _visit_ Bananas, rather than call. They have a card for each provider, showing approximate location, which you can match up to the maps they have there. This is really important if you are trying to find daycare on a specific travel route. Also, remember that you may look at things differently after your child arrives, and you have developed specific concerns/issues that are important to you and to him/her. I looked at places when I was pregnant that seemed fine, but I felt differently after my boy was born, so I felt like I had to re-visit and re-interview some places, just to be sure. doesn't hurt to get on more waiting lists than you need, and turn down their offers of a spot later.

Sept 2007

RE: CPR and First Aid classes for Teen Sitters

BANANAS in Oakland offers such classes. My son took one several years ago and it gave him more confidence when babysitting kids. Their website is:

Jan 2006

RE: Help parenting an exuberant 3-year-old

Try Bananas. Meg Zweiback, who is a great teacher, holds classes there almost every month on dealing with specific age groups. I've gone to a few, and have found them quite helpful. I believe she also has a private practice, so if you need more specific help, she can meet with you one on one. Kim

Oct 2001

RE: Infant/CPR class in Spanish needed

Bananas on Claremont teaches an infant/child CPR class in Spanish. Also try the Red Cross on Broadway in Oakland, they may have a class. Nancy

Feb 1999

Re: Therapist for Step parenting issues
There is a drop-in stepparent support group that meets the first Thursday of every month 7:30-9:00 pm at Bananas on Claremont in Oakland. I believe the phone number is 433-9404, but check a Parents' Press to be sure. The moderator, Anthony, is a stepfather, father, and professional counselor. He is very knowledgeable and does a good job of running the group. I attended for about a year until my son was born. I haven't been able to make it back since (he's 15 months old now). One drawback to the group is that attendance was very irregular. Only three people came on a regular basis, me and a couple (who also now have a toddler and aren't able to make it).

And, yes, being a stepparent can be very hard. I've been one for about 5 years now. If you want to talk more about it, please feel free to send me e-mail. Lucy

October 1998

RE: parenting classes
You should check Bannanas... They offer short topic related classes from time to time. They are usually free, and taught by really good folks. They have a calendar at:

Bananas offers great parenting classes. They are either free or at a very reasonable price. Bananas is located at 5232 Claremont Ave., Oakland, Ca 94618. Phone number 658-0381. It is easier to write to them or go to their agency than to make a phone call. This is a very popular agency and the phone line is always busy. Their newsletter, which cost about $5 a year, has great referrals for classes, workshops, activities for children, etc. Good luck!! Zeze

June 1997

Regarding the inquiry about first aid, she could try BANANAS in Oakland. They regularly run courses on child and infant first aid and basic (not certifiable) CPR. It is comprised of two evening sessions and is relatively inexpensive. I found the first aid pretty basic -- a good refresher. The CPR training was done in one evening and I learnt a lot, but I think one would need longer training to feel confident to use those skills in an emergency. On the whole, I feel better having done some kind of training. You can call BANANAS at 658-0381. By the way, they are a wonderful resource for parents and their warm line (658-6046) for advice on just about anything child related is great! Harald