12 July 2013

Fitzgerald Announces Over €45, 000 in Capital Funding to Improve Local Childcare Facilities

Local T.D and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, has announced that €45,396 has been granted in capital funding to 13 local childcare services across Clondalkin, Lucan, Rathcoole and Newcastle. In 2012, Minister Fitzgerald reintroduced a capital funding scheme for childcare since this scheme was discontinued by the previous Government in 2008. This year’s fund will see €2.75 million go towards over 600 facilities nationwide.

"It is so important to invest in children in their early years and I am delighted that local service providers are benefitting from this funding. The allocation of over €45,000 to our area will help ensure that we continue to improve the quality of early childhood care and education across Clondalkin, Lucan, Newcastle and Rathcoole. I am pleased, for the second year in a row, to be in a position to provide capital funding for the childcare sector. This capital programme represents my commitment, and that of Government, to the ongoing development of the childcare sector,” said Fitzgerald.

The funding will go towards educational equipment and facilities as well as safe outdoor play spaces in childcare services, improving buildings and supporting services to ensure that all children have better experiences within early year’s settings.

“Last week, I launched National Recreation Week in the brand new Clondalkin Skate Park. In my role as Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, I recognise the importance of play and recreation and have consistently highlighted it’s benefits in supporting children’s development and promoting physical activity. Startling statistics revealed by my Department’s show that one in four 3 year olds are overweight or obese. This funding will help childcare services provide a safe outdoor space to encourage play and physical activity to try and tackle this serious issue for our young children,” stated Fitzgerald.

“I would like to thank all of those who took the time and effort to apply for funding under this programme and to compliment them for their commitment to improving the quality of childcare services. A lot of parents rely on these services and it is crucial that we help provide the facilities for children to thrive in all aspects of their lives while in the care of childcare providers,” concluded Fitzgerald.