We appreciate that sometimes in life we find ourselves in challenging or unexpected circumstances. At Centrepoint our purpose is to make childcare possible for every family, helping and supporting children and their families through these moments.
We are committed not only to expanding the services we offer to the public, but also to playing even more of a key role in supporting children and families within the community whose needs are greatest. We feel no child or family should be disadvantaged and we are committed to making care and learning through play accessible to everyone by apportioning a percentage of our revenue and specific fundraisers to support this.
Our Emergency Care Scheme (ESML) cares for the children of parents and/or the siblings of children who have experienced some adversity or setback which has resulted in them requiring immediate, short term, childcare. We also provide heavily subsidised medium term and long-term childcare where it is felt that the welfare and the emotional and/or physical wellbeing of the child is at risk.
In addition to this, our Financial Assistance scheme provides support for families who are experiencing financial difficulties and are struggling to pay for their childcare.
Spaces on the ESML scheme are allocated on a case-by-case basis. Scenarios can include:
• Emergency childcare following an accident or medical emergency
• More flexible hours for Key Workers
• Additional sessions to support the child’s developmental needs
• Care while family members attend medical treatments
• Children attending whilst a sibling or parent is undergoing medical treatment
• Children attending who have siblings or parents with long-term medical needs
• A parent losing their job
To access this help, a professional will need to refer you, for example a nurse at a hospital, a health visitor or your doctor. If your family already attend Centrepoint, an application can be made through the Practice Managers.
Two children were already attending Centrepoint. As a result of losing his job, Dad started to struggle with depression due to the financial impact on the family. Unable to pay childcare fees, Centrepoint supported the family for twelve weeks. This allowed the children to continue in their normal routine and their Dad to recover, attend interviews and find a new position. The referral to the ESML scheme was made internally by Centrepoint.
A parent with a high-risk pregnancy due to severe epilepsy was finding it difficult to look after an energetic two-year-old during the Covid restrictions. Socialisation, important at this stage in the child’s life, was also difficult. Centrepoint was able to give mum some respite by providing two free days childcare in the nursery for her child. The referral was made through a Keyworker from Brighter Futures.
A parent who had just been diagnosed with cancer, had to stop work and needed to attend appointments, but also needed time to rest. Her 3-year-old child already attended a Centrepoint Nursery in the mornings. We supported the family by offering free nursery care in the afternoons and holidays, at no additional charge. This allowed the other parent to continue working and support the family financially, while the sick parent could attend medical appointments and have time to rest and recover. The child remained shielded and surrounded by her usual routine, Key Worker and friends. The referral was made with the Nursery Practice Manager, who became aware of the families need for support.
A three-year-old child with complex additional needs had been awarded 12 hours by the JCCT. During the transition visits it became clear that he would benefit from additional sessions so Centrepoint matched the hours already awarded by JCCT. Attending Nursery benefitted the child in maximising progress in his development.
The referral was made by a Centrepoint Keyworker.
A ten-year-old boy with diagnosis of ADHD was looked after by his single parent mother, who herself suffered from physical and mental health conditions. Having looked into the complexity of the day-to-day situation, it was decided to support the family in the holiday’s full time. This not only allowed mum to continue in the job she recently returned to, but also allowed her to complete basic tasks such as shopping in the extra 1.5 hours, which was normally stressful and challenging for her son.
The referral was made by the Family Support Worker.
During the COVID pandemic, an 8-year-old child was not able to attend school. Her single parent mother had no childcare option due to restrictions, but also needed the income from her job in a care home. Her wages did not allow for paid childcare. It was felt in the best interest of the child to allow her to attend Playcare as a regular setting, matching school hours. She met one of her friends and settled well and had a regular routine to her day.
The referral was made by a Social worker.