Deputy health and social services minister Julie Morgan has announced an additional capital funding package of £7.7million to help working parents of three- and four-year-olds in Wales access 30 hours of early education and childcare for 48 weeks a year.
- £60m awarded to grow 30-hour childcare in Wales
- Wales unveils experience-rich curriculum
- Wales expands childcare training scheme
The new funding includes £6.5m for 12 individual projects across Wales to set up new childcare settings or refurbish existing facilities for the scheme, which is now available across the country.
The package also includes an extra £1.2million for the small grant schemes administered by local authorities due to increased demand from childcare providers.
These schemes enable providers to access up to £10,000 of capital funding for building adaptations.
Some of the projects receiving funding, on top of allocations awarded in February, include:
- Cenarth Primary School in Ceredigion is awarded an additional £370,500 to create a wraparound childcare facility, including Cylch Meithrin provision, a wraparound service for three- and four-year-olds, and a new after-school club. This follows an allocation of £369,500.
- Ysgol Beuno Sant, Bala in Gwynedd receives an additional £254,000 to enable the relocation of its Cylch Meithrin to a new site. This follows an allocation of £46,000.
- Homestead Nursery in Wrexham was awarded an extra £30,000 to enable it to extend and increase capacity, following an award of £170,000.
- St Mary’s School in Overton received an additional £200,000 to extend the school premises and provide a permanent setting for the Overton Playgroup, in addition to an award of £200,000.
The Government’s funding package takes the total 30 hours funding allocated in Wales since April 2019 to £81.1m.
Welsh childcare providers have also received 100 per cent business rate relief since April.
Julie Morgan, deputy health and social services minister, said, ‘Enhancing childcare provision across Wales is a major priority for Welsh Government. Today’s announcement supports our commitment to reducing the financial burden on families and removing barriers to parents either taking up or returning to work if they wish.
‘This additional funding will ensure improved facilities as well as the creation of new childcare settings, directly benefitting parents and their children. We know that the cost of childcare is a major concern for working parents so I am very pleased that so many children and their families have already benefitted from the offer.’
Early Years Wales welcomed the funding announcement.
In a statement they said, 'The capital funding will provide more opportunities for providers across the sector to make structural improvements and building adaptations that will improve and expand their provision so that children can experience high quality play and learning opportunities whist parents are working or training. We are pleased that some of our member settings will benefit from this funding.'