There are also close links between the Department and the Department of Children and Youth Affairs in this area. Nationally, there are 276 schemes with ring-fenced places for childcare. There has been no decrease in the number of CE ring fenced places allocated compared to the numbers that were on offer in 2011. A key element in the approval of all CE programmes, including childcare ring-fenced places, is the requirement that such programmes do not displace current jobs or employees or that they are not used to fill vacancies. Following the completion of the CE Financial Review, officials in the Department are advising sponsors of the revised allocations for materials and training for individual CE schemes.
Under the revised arrangements notified to Sponsors, schemes were not given universal amounts of financial support but instead were provided with a specific level of support aimed at meeting the particular costs necessarily incurred by them, having regard to the overall level of funding available for community employment nationally.