Early childhood Services that have had to close or partially close due to COVID-19, including in the absence of stay-at-home orders, can apply for a Community Child Care Fund (CCCF) Special Circumstances grant. The Community Child Care Fund (CCCF) Special Circumstances Grant Opportunity helps services stay open when something unexpected happens.
About The Grant
To be eligible, applicants must be a Child Care Subsidy (CCS) approved provider under Family Assistance Law of an approved service operating for a disadvantaged and vulnerable community that is one of the following:
- at high risk of temporary or permanent closure due to financial viability issues resulting from an unforeseen event or circumstance. This can include local emergencies, bushfire, flood, cyclone or pandemic, or
- at risk of permanent closure, and the closure would result in a lack of suitable child care for the community, or
- seeking to open a new service in a community where another service has closed and there is a lack of suitable child care, and the new service requires funding to be viable.
Grant funding for each eligible COVID-19 affected service will not exceed $150,000 each financial year.
All COVID-19 related applications from eligible services must be supported by documentary evidence and financial information that demonstrates the service is severely financially impacted by one or more periods of COVID-19 Stay at Home Directions and at high risk of closure, despite accessing other COVID-19 related funding.
To be eligible to apply for COVID-19 grant support under this grant opportunity the applicant must:
- be an approved service operating in a metropolitan or inner regional area that was subject to stay at home restrictions during 2020-21 or 2021-22; and
- not have closed during a period of COVID-19 Stay at Home Directions and continued to provide care pursuant to Child Care exemptions to Stay at Home Directions, unless the service was directed to close by a relevant Commonwealth, state or territory authority or health agency; and
- be at significant risk of short term financial viability issues and at high risk of closure due to impacts (e.g. revenue loss from reduced child attendance) of one or more periods of COVID-19 Stay at Home Directions during 2020-21 or 2021-22; and
- meet the requirements in clause 12.10 National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse (where applicable).
- For the purposes of (c), an assessment of the risk of short term financial viability issues may only be made after the Provider of a Service has accessed existing viability support. This payment is a last resort.
What The Grant Money Can Be Used For?
Special circumstances grants can be used for activities such as:
- implementing changes to business practices and/or models, in response to the unforeseen event or special circumstance
- temporarily contributing to standard child care operating costs to assist with the service remaining open
- helping with additional costs as a result of the unforeseen event or circumstance
- addressing health and safety requirements, directly related to an unforeseen event
- other reasonable activities, as agreed with the department, that are responsive to the needs of the community, or to
- ensure the service can continue to provide quality child care, such as additional transport services, family engagement, extended hours and other support activities.
For more information on applying, guidelines and eligibility: CCCF Special Circumstances Grant