Hundreds of Londoners set to benefit from new childcare scheme
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson and the London Development Agency today welcomed the Government’s decision to expand the Childcare Affordability Programme (CAP) in the capital. This will build on the LDA’s groundbreaking programme, launched in 2005, which has already helped over 8,500 families in London by providing them with low cost, high quality childcare and helping parents return to work.
Around 500 families in five London boroughs will now receive 100 per cent of their childcare costs as opposed to up to 80 per cent under the old scheme. Childcare costs are typically 25% higher in London than in the rest of the country and are recognised as one of the biggest barriers faced by parents who wish to return to work.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said:
“I’m committed to using all the resources available to me to help Londoners through these challenging economic times. In my recently published Economic Recovery Action Plan for London I promised to help parents in the capital access affordable childcare. This additional funding will allow families in the capital to do just that and give parents the opportunity to go out and find work or to stay in the jobs they already have. This will not only bring huge benefits to them but London’s economy and could ultimately help to lift thousands of children in the capital out of poverty.”
London Development Agency Deputy Chief Executive Sarah Ebanja said:
“The Childcare Affordability Programme enables parents to overcome one of the biggest barriers to getting into work in London - the high cost of childcare. This trial to fund 100% of childcare costs builds on the London Development Agency’s success so far and will help more families get into employment and keep out of poverty.”
The Department of Children, Schools and Families have also announced proposals for London boroughs to pilot intensive forms of active guidance to help 500 families navigate their way through the benefit system, aiming to increase the take-up of childcare and enable more parents to move back into training or employment.
This is based on evidence from the first round of the London Development Agency’s Childcare Affordability Programme, which found that guiding parents through the system has increased employment.
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