Press release

£1 million in grants paid out as childcare scheme hits milestone

The childcare business grant has distributed £1 million to new childcare businesses - and there is still more money for worthy causes.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Young children painting

Budding nursery owners or childminders are being encouraged to apply for a slice of £1 million to help them set up their own businesses.

The Childcare Business Grant Scheme is available to support self-employed people who want to set up their own childcare business and provides help with costs such as training, equipment and adapting premises. The scheme today hits a milestone with £1 million paid out, with a further £1 million still available.

Nicky Morgan, Minister for Women and Equalities said:

The childcare business grant is a key part of our long-term economic plan. It has already benefited thousands of people, from nursery owners and childminders to the children of parents who use them.

We know that it can be tough setting up your own business. This money is a helping hand for people who care about children and want to work looking after them.

It will also encourage the creation of more childcare places, a key part of our plan to help parents who want to get back to work after having children.

To celebrate the milestone, Children’s Minister Sam Gyimah today visited the Brown Bears Nursery in Tottenham, which owner Cheryl Brown opened up after accessing a grant.

Children’s Minister Sam Gyimah said:

We know that parents want good-quality, affordable and available childcare. The childcare business grant encourages the creation of more places, helping mothers get back to work.

This money is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who wants to set up their own business to look after children. If you are thinking about taking the first steps towards becoming a childminder or nursery owner then I encourage you to apply.

The grants offer £500 for those looking to start nurseries or look after disabled children, and £250 to prospective childminders. So far, more than 4,500 grants have been paid out.

As part of the Childcare Business Grant Scheme, new childcare businesses are also being encouraged to team up with a free mentor so they can access free and specially-tailored start-up advice.

Notes to editors

  1. Applications to the Childcare Business Grant Scheme must be received by December 31. Read more information about the childcare business grant.

  2. Read information about the free start-up advice businesses can receive.

  3. The government understands the difficulties faced by working parents and are working to improve the choice, quality and flexibility of childcare available to them.

The government:

  • is providing free childcare of 15 hours a week for all 3- and 4-year-olds, an increase from 12.5 hours under the previous government, saving families an additional £380 a year per child
  • has extended free childcare of 15 hours a week to the most disadvantaged 2-year-olds, with 40% eligible from this September
  • is from next year introducing tax-free childcare of up to £2,000 per child
  • is supporting low income families on universal credit who will receive up to 85% of their childcare costs
  • has improved the quality and status of the early years workforce through new early years educator and early years teacher qualifications
  • has worked with Ofsted to introduce a more robust regulatory and inspection framework for the early years

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Published 3 September 2014