The government’s recent increase to Child Care Subsidy (CCS) on July 10 is helping Thuy put her family through childcare.
With her eldest son now in school, Thuy’s two youngest access a combined 80 hours of childcare a week at a Uniting early learning centre in Melbourne.
“They love it here,” says Thuy.
“They love their teachers, the playground, the learning. Every day they come here they’re very happy.
“If I have more children they’re going to come here.”
Thuy says her updated subsidy has helped her and her husband return to work and comfortably pay for their children’s care.
“I think this subsidy is really helping families. It is helping parents go back to work and be able to afford to.
“It’s good for children too, they can come to care, see other children, and learn quicker. They aren’t just at home.”
Thanks to the subsidy, Thuy’s fees are subsidised by up to 95%. In a typical fortnight, Thuy’s unsubsidised fees total over $17,500, but her out of pocket costs once the subsidy is applied total less than $2,500. With the recent subsidy increase, Thuy now saves an additional $80 per fortnight.
Uniting Early Learning coordinator, Lisa, says the increased subsidy has been a great help to many families at her centre.
“Most families are paying less, so their fees have reduced since the increased Child Care Subsidy has come in,” says Lisa.
“Especially, for families that have a second or third child coming into the centre.”
Lisa stresses that the increased cost of living is pushing families to return to work quicker, meaning childcare is a necessity for many.
“Child Care Subsidies are an important part of the family budget. I don’t think some families would be able to afford care if they had to pay the full fee.”
Lisa and her team go above and beyond to ensure families are getting the most support possible with their fees.
Thuy’s middle son, Tyler, lives with autism and requires additional support, however, the family were not aware of the inclusion subsidies that were available to them.
“We worked with Thuy to seek out additional support for kinder inclusion subsidies and inclusion support subsidies across our two programs. So, the subsidies have allowed us to better support Tyler and his family the best we can,” says Lisa.
“I didn’t know Tyler could get support through the NDIS. Lisa helped me apply,” added Thuy.
Lisa urges families who are looking into childcare to apply for the CCS as soon as possible.
“As soon as a family comes for a visit to the centre, one of the first things I ask is if they have applied for the Child Care Subsidy,” she says.
“I always suggest they apply as soon as possible. Even if they aren’t thinking about starting childcare for a few months.”
Thuy also encourages others to look into the subsidy. She says it has made a huge difference for her family.
“We are very happy, we didn’t expect to save so much money,” she says.
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