03/12/2020

New Measures To Support Childcare Providers

Education Minister, Peter Weir has announced new proposals to assist sustainability of the childcare sector.

The Minister outlined plans following the allocation of £8.5 million funding in October for ongoing recovery and sustainability within the sector.

The Childcare Sustainability Support Fund developed for the period 1 September to 31 December, will:

• help childcare providers with the additional costs of operating within Covid-19 guidance; and

• provide financial support to childcare providers operating with reduced demand for services.

The Fund is open for applications on Friday 4 December from daycare and school-aged childcare settings, childminders, eligible playgroups and crèches. A grant payment will be made according to the type and size of the provider. Eligible childcare providers will shortly receive an email inviting them to apply.
News Image
Peter Weir said: "Registered childcare providers offer safe and nurturing environments for children and it is important they remain open. As part of ongoing childcare recovery, the Childcare Sustainability Support Fund will provide short-term support for the sector to assist their ongoing sustainability and recovery during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"It is essential that we continue to work together across the education and health sectors to ensure the availability of childcare provision and to support the economy, while at the same time ensuring parents can access safe and responsive care.

"I want to thank registered childcare providers for the essential work they do. Their hard work on the ground and determination to maintain services at this critical time is vital in helping us deal with the ongoing challenges facing society as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak. It is a testament to their commitment that children have been able to continue to access positive developmental experiences in their childcare provision, and, parents have been able to continue to work and provide important services for society."

The Minister said his officials are currently working on a further funding scheme which will address temporary closures during the period September to December which will be announced in due course.  


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

26 November 2020
Collaborative Effort Needed To Stop Crime Gangs Exploiting Communities - Long
Following a recent discovery the illegal drugs had been hidden in a shipment of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Justice Minister Naomi Long has called for a collaborative effort to "stop crime groups exploiting our community". According to the Organised Crime Task Force (OCTF), operations between 2019/2020 included: recovered approximately £2.
30 November 2020
Financial Help For Businesses Effected By Latest Closures
Financial assistance for non-essential retail and other businesses now impacted by the latest Health Protection Regulations that came into effect last Friday has been announced by Finance Minister Conor Murphy.
19 May 2008
Minding Kids Is No Childsplay
Many families seeking childcare in Northern Ireland are finding the search difficult, according to a major new survey on childcare commissioned by NICMA - the Childminding Association.
04 December 2020
Time To Plan For A New Future For Everyone - SF
Sinn Féin have said that it is time to "plan for a new future which will work for everyone", as they welcome the publication by Ireland's Future of its discussion paper 'The Conversation on Ireland's Future: A Principled Framework for Change'.
17 November 2003
Belfast seminar to tackle childcare barriers
A seminar aimed at removing childcare barriers for women in full time work is to take place in Belfast next week.