An extra €3.5m will be made available to childcare providers in the form of a ‘non-contact time payment’ announced today by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr. Katherine Zappone.
This is in addition to €14.5 million in non–contact time payments Minister Zappone negotiated in Budget 2017 and which will be paid to providers delivering various Government childcare schemes from June 26th.
The new payments will be made before the end of the year.
Today’s announcement will benefit childcare providers participating in the Community Childcare Subvention (CCS and CCSP) and the Training and Employment Childcare (TEC) programmes. All services signed up to deliver these schemes from September will be invited to apply.
Approximately 1,700 childcare services currently provide these childcare subsidisation programmes. However, it is expected that numbers will increase significantly this September as more lower income parents become eligible for enhanced financial supports, and all parents of children aged between 6 and 36 months in registered childcare become eligible for a weekly universal subsidy.
The payment to providers is intended to make a contribution towards the administration and non-contact hour costs involved in providing quality childcare. In particular, the new funding recognises the time providers need to spend familiarising themselves with the new affordable childcare measures, signing contracts, meeting regulatory and compliance requirements and assisting parents with understanding how they can benefit.
The measure provides for a payment equivalent to an additional seven days’ funding for services.
Minister Zappone said:
“I know that childcare providers put in long hours beyond their core time working with children, ensuring that they can deliver quality childcare through Government programmes.
Today’s measure, on top of the €14.5m I secured in Budget 2017, is intended to ensure that staff can be paid for their contribution to meeting the administrative demands.
Government has a responsibility to support the provision of quality childcare. This measure reflects a continued commitment to assisting childcare providers with the demands they face every day meeting the needs of children, parents, funders and regulators.”
All providers of the Department’s funded childcare programmes will be able to apply for the Budget 2017 Non-Contact payment from the week commencing June 26th and at a later date for the additional funding associated with the September 2017 affordable childcare measures.