More than 80% of childcare providers have signed up to deliver extra supports for families.

There had been fears that parents would not be able to avail of the new Affordable Childcare scheme, as many facilities were slow to register citing high administration costs.

The Department of Children and Youth Affairs says the uptake has surged in recent weeks with more than 3,000 créches, pre-schools and other childcare services are now signed up.

Parents can now get €1,040 per year in childcare supports for all children up to three years of age, while up to €7,500 is available for families most in need.

See the full article on The Irish Examiner website here