Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Questions (73)

Ruth Coppinger


73. Deputy Ruth Coppinger asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if assistance will be provided to two childcare facilities providing childcare services to up to 120 families that may have to relocate during renovations at a centre (details supplied). [29692/19]

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Written answers (Question to Children)

Hartstown Montessori and Little Sparrows Preschool are private childcare services which operate on the grounds of Hartstown Community Centre. I understand that remedial works are required in respect of key elements of the building. I also understand that the provision of childcare by these services may be disrupted while the renovations are carried out.

I would strongly recommend that the services contact Fingal Childcare Committee to seek support. DCYA funds 30 Childcare Committees across the country to support providers and parents. The local childcare Committee is an important source of expertise and information for providers and their local knowledge often proves helpful in addressing challenges.

Additionally, my Department oversees an integrated Case Management system operated by Pobal in cooperation with the local Childcare Committee.  A dedicated team assess services facing sustainability challenges, and may be able to offer advice and non-financial support in respect of the specific circumstances reported by these services. I would therefore recommend that the services in question also contact Pobal. However, I do note that while my Department does provide funding to assist childcare providers through specific challenges to their sustainability, such as emergency relocations, these supports are currently only available to community not for profit services.

In the event that the services are unable to remain open while renovations are carried out, the local Childcare Committee will offer assistance to parents in finding alternative places for their children should this be required.