Sinn Féin MLA and Junior Minister Jennifer McCann today launched ‘Bright Start’ - the Executive’s programme for affordable and integrated childcare.
Speaking at the launch the West Belfast MLA said:
“Good quality childcare which provides positive experiences and promotes children’s opportunities to develop is a starting point for lifelong achievement.
“With rising costs and tough economic conditions many people are experiencing financial pressures.
“Bright Start and the key first actions, aim to address the need for a programme of affordable and integrated childcare.
“Work is a sure path out of disadvantage and we want Bright Start to help as many people as possible to take that path. We have listened to parents and childcare providers to enable us to identify the priority needs of people living here.
“The first actions will include the creation of 3,000 places for school age childcare targeted at families in need and 2,000 places in the school estate.
“It will also support a rural child-minder package to create an additional 1,000 places in rural locations, and develop the scheme, improving outcomes for disabled children.”