Published at 11 September 2020
Last updated 11 September 2020
Minister for Children, Disability, Equality and Integration, Roderic O’Gorman TD, today announced the award of the 2020 round of Childminder Development Grants.
This year’s round sees a significant increase in the number of childminders who have been approved to receive the Childminder Development Grant in 2020, with 202 childminders awarded grants this year, a 50% increase from 2019, and a total value of €190,543.
The Childminder Development Grant provides up to €1,000 to assist childminders who are providing a childminding service in their own homes, to enhance quality and safety in the service through the purchase of small capital items, equipment, toys or minor adaptation costs. It may also give financial assistance to new or prospective childminders with their initial set-up costs.
In addition to the Childminder Development Grant, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs this year has also provided reopening grants to both childminders and centre-based services, to assist with the additional costs of reopening during the Covid-19 pandemic. So far, 287 childminders have received the Childminding Re-opening Grant since July with further applications being processed since the latter scheme ended on 9 September. In addition 4,014 Covid-19 Capital Grants and 3,790 Re-opening Support Payments have been approved for DCYA-funded providers.
Making today’s announcement, Minister Roderic O’Gorman said:
“I am delighted to announce this support for childminders, who provide such a vital service for children and families. Development Grants help childminders make those small changes that can have a big impact.
“I intend to continue extending our supports for childminders over the years ahead. Over the coming months a Childminding Action Plan will be finalised, which will set out plans for bespoke training, regulations and supports and will accelerate access to the National Childcare Scheme for more childminders.”
The Minister thanked both childminders and centre-based providers of early learning and care and school-age childcare for their commitment and hard work in reopening over recent weeks in the challenging context of Covid-19. The very large majority of services have now reopened, and providers are reporting a high proportion of children returning to services.
The Minister also thanked Meath County Childcare Committee for its assistance in administering the Childminder Development Grant in 2020 on behalf of the Department.