With lots of experience in this industry, we can completely empathise and understand that some families may need financial support for their childcare cost. Not everyone has the ability to pay for nursery, but every child deserves the opportunity to experience a safe, learning environment.

Fortunately, across the UK there is various funding help available. If you’re a bit overwhelmed with it all or you’re struggling to find help, don’t worry! Here’s some detailed information on the routes you can go through to get funding, should you need it.

Tax credits

If you’re a working parent, you may be able to get extra tax credits to help you with your childcare costs. A few conditions:

If you’re a single parent, you must work 16 hours or more a week to get childcare tax credits.

For couples, you must work 16 hours or more a week. However, only one parent has to work these hours if the other parent is either:

  • In hospital or prison
  • Entitled to carer’s allowance
  • Claiming other benefits such as, credits or reductions for disability or illness. For example, Disability Living Allowance

The maximum you can claim for childcare costs is currently £122.50 per week for one child, or £210.00 per week for two or more children.

Workplace vouchers

You may be able to gain childcare help from your employer through workplace vouchers. This is split into exemption from tax and National Insurance and non-exemption.

If you’re exempt from tax and National insurance, there are various types of childcare support your employer could provide, including:

  • Workplace nurseries
  • Childcare vouchers
  • Childcare arranged by your employer with a particular provider

If you’re not exempt from tax and National Insurance, your employer could offer you support including:

  • Childcare fees paid directly to the care provider
  • School fees paid directly
  • Cash to pay for childcare

Student funding

If you’re still in education, it‘s not only difficult to manage your studies and your children, but you may not have time to work. There are a few types of support you can get whilst studying, including:

Childcare Grant

If you’re at university and studying a full-time higher education course, you’re eligible for a Childcare Grant. This is applicable for care costs for children under 15, however if they have special needs, it’s under 17.

Care to Learn

If you’re under 20 and caring for your own child, you may be eligible for this support. These payments go directly to your childcare provider.

Discretionary Learner Support

If you’re part taking in a further education course and you’re over 20, you may be eligible for this support.

Free early education and childcare

3-4 year olds

All children in this age gap are entitled to 570 hours of free early education or childcare a year, according to GOV UK. This can be spread out through the year at a reduced rate, which will be easier for you.

You can start claiming for this support after your child’s third birthday and the date they start depends on their birthday.

2 year olds

Some 2 year olds are also eligible for free childcare support. If your child is eligible for this support, you must receive one of the following:

  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Working tax credits and earning £16,190 a year or less
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit as well as having an annual income not over £16,190 a year

Other factors include:

  • They receive Disability Living Allowance
  • They’re being taken care of by a local council
  • They have special needs

At Little Shipmates we have experienced understanding of all of these support types. We want to make sure your children have the opportunity to go a nursery that will enrich their development in many ways. Contact us and we can help you find the best support for your child.

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