Offaly County Childcare Committee -   057 9135878

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Offaly County Childcare Committee is located at St Joseph's Community Centre in Kilcormac, Co Offaly.

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Programme Updates 26th June 2020

​Dear Service Provider,Pobal updates

Capital Grant Update

As you are aware, Pobal on behalf of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA), launched the online application process for the ‘COVID-19 Capital Grant’ on Monday, 22nd June. The ‘COVID-19 Capital Grant’ is a once-off reopening grant of €14.2million for centre-based providers. Applications are managed through the online system known as HIVE and applications will remain open for early years providers to submit an application until Friday, 28th August 2020. Pobal will be making grant payments up to Friday 11th September 2020.

Pobal can confirm the HIVE system for online applications is fully operational. Besides a small downtime on Monday 22nd June to activate the new application process, HIVE metrics show the system is fully available and accessible to early years providers. On Monday and Tuesday, a small number of issues that affected some early years providers were raised with Pobal’s Early Years Provider Centre and these were resolved in an efficient and timely manner.

Within the first 3 days of the application process, Pobal has seen high volumes of successful applications created by early years providers on the system as illustrated in the table below:

Numbers of daily applications received:

Monday, 22nd June 2020 895
Tuesday, 23rd June 2020 423
Wednesday, 24th June 2020 296

 

Of these, 1,152 applications were approved by close of business Wednesday 24th June. All of these applicants will receive funding by Friday 26th June to a total value of €3.9m.  Pobal will continue to receive, approve and pay applications under this scheme on an ongoing basis over the coming weeks.

Early Years Service Providers have a further 9 weeks to submit an application under the COVID-19 Capital Grant. However, the figures above illustrate that already 25% of providers have commenced their applications and have successfully engaged with the system.

Reopening Grant Update

Please note that further to feedback from childcare providers the following provision will not be a precondition for the Enhanced Reopening Support Payment (RSP) - “That there is at least one child registered for a DCYA ELC and SAC programme and attending regularly between 29 June and 23 August.”

Additionally, the following provision will not now be a precondition for the standard Reopening Support Payment (RSP) - “That there is at least one child registered for a DCYA ELC and SAC programme and attending regularly between 29 June and 16 October 2020”

Instead, all providers will be required to notify their local CCC immediately prior to re-opening, confirming their re-opening date. Providers are reminded that they must be open and providing a childcare service within the terms of the funding agreement for respective grants.

Please refer to the FAQ at the following link https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/22329-faqs-version-1-reopening-funding-package-for-childcare-services-12062020/

TWSCS

Please see below some important reminders in relation to TWSCS.

Overpayments

Pobal would like to confirm that we have agreed with the DCYA that any overpayments arising for providers on the TWSCS will not be recouped from the Capital Grant or the Reopening Support Payment.

We are also working closely with the DCYA to agree on the method and manner of recoupment in a way that minimises impact and financial disruption to providers.

Application amendments

  • You may have already received a call or an email from the Pobal Early Years Provider Centre in relation to your TWSCS Application.
  • Further to this, we would like to bring your attention to the following common examples that may be affecting your TWSCS calculations which may need to be updated – see below.
  • Please note, the deadline to complete amendments, should you need to do so is close of business on this coming Tuesday, 30th June.
  • Pobal are unable to verify that any changes to the application forms are correct until another verification check is performed with Revenue. This is scheduled for the week ending 3rd July
  • Any delays experienced with the Revenue TWSS cannot be resolved by Pobal and service providers must liaise with Revenue to resolve these issues.

There are a number of scenarios covered in the  Amending a TWSCS Application Form + Viewing TWSCS Payment Calculation guidance document and steps on how you should correct these issues.

Gross pay figure

In order to calculate your overhead payment we have asked you for the Average Gross Weekly payroll costs for January and February. The figure you have provided must be in line with the Net Weekly Pay information for employees.

As previously instructed, to calculate this figure take the total gross pay value for all childcare staff for January and February and divide by 9.

Submitting all individual service applications for multi-service organisations

Organisations were directed to ‘complete an application form for each service’. Please ensure that all application forms for each service in your organisation have a status of submitted (even if blank) when all updates are complete.

Separating monthly or fortnightly employee payments for payment weeks 1-4

Payments made in April should be divided into individual weekly amounts to reflect amount paid to Revenue.

  • This is done in the Employee section of the application form.
  • Please see Section 2 of the above mentioned guidance document on how to edit an employee’s information.

If an employee was paid fortnightly or monthly on 4th April – 3rd May (payment weeks 1-4 on the application form) then you are asked to treat each PRSI week as an individual payment.

For example:

If you paid an employee €800 on 22nd April that related to 2 PRSI weeks; you should input

  • Payment Date 1: 22nd April Payment Value: €400
  • Payment Date 2: 22nd April Payment Value: €400

Pobal continues to work hard to assist and support all ELC/SAC providers, acknowledging the challenges experienced by the sector due to COVID-19 and the significant efforts the sector is now undertaking to prepare for reopening facilities on 29th June. We would like to take this opportunity to offer our best wishes to all services reopening over coming weeks as well as a big welcome back to the children in your care.

If you have any queries, please contact the Early Years Provider Centre at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or raise a service request on the Early Years Hive.

Many thanks,

Early Years Team

Technical issues with Annual Early Years Service Profile platform – deadline extended to 5pm Friday 3rd July

PobalLogoDear provider,

Unfortunately we are experiencing a technical outage on the Annual Early Years Service Profile survey platform that is out of our control. We are working to resolve this as quickly as possible but the site will be unavailable until the issue is fixed.

We will notify you as soon as the survey is available. In the meantime we have extended the deadline by one week to allow you more time to complete the survey.

The new survey deadline is 5pm Friday 3rd July. More information on this will follow.

We apologise for any inconvenience cause and thank you as always for your participation in this important work.

Kind regards,
Monitoring, Analysis and Outcomes Unit

‘How’s Your Head – Young Voices during COVID-19’, a national consultation with young people on mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19

Minister Zappone launches ‘How’s Your Head – Young Voices during COVID-19’,a national consultation with 19875672 1337059526348124 484620879276509836 n
young people on mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19

From Department of Children and Youth Affairs

Published at: 25 June 2020

The Department of Children and Youth Affairs have today opened a national consultation with young people on mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19. How’s Your Head – Young Voices during COVID-19 will hear directly from young people about what they have found hard during COVID-19, what changes in their lives they would like to retain, and what would help young people to improve their mental health and well-being over the coming summer months and beyond.

Opening the consultation today, the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone said:

“It has always been my experience that young people are the best architects of the solutions to address the challenges in their lives. COVID-19 is impacting on young people’s lives in many ways and now my Department wants to hear directly from them about what these impacts are and what might improve their situation as we continue to live alongside COVID-19.”

The consultation, hosted on www.spunout.ie, is open to all young people between the ages of 15 and 24 and will remain open from 24 June to 3 July. A Youth Advisory Group designed and piloted the consultation questions and decided on the title; How’s Your Head – Young Voices during COVID-19.

Since the onset of COVID-19, and its related restrictions, concerns have been increasing about its impact on the mental health and well-being of young people. Research findings and reports from those in the youth sector indicate that young people are one of the groups most impacted. The consultation will help to deepen the understanding of how young people have experienced life during COVID-19. It will also provide valuable information that will influence our decision-making on how society can respond during the next period of living with COVID-19.

The findings from the consultation will be documented to inform relevant service design and delivery for young people. It will also assist Government in developing other appropriate policy responses on the issues raised by young people, supporting an informed, whole of society response to COVID-19 as relevant to the lives of young people.

A group of key stakeholders representing the National Youth Council of Ireland, health services, and research experts are working with the Department of Children and Youth Affairs to oversee the consultation and to ensure findings from the process are listened to and responded to in a timely and appropriate manner.

Annual Early Years Service Profile 2019/2020– DEADLINE: 5pm Friday 26th June

Dear Service Provider,PobalLogo

The deadline for submitting this year’s Early Years Service Profile is 5pm, Friday 26th June.

This year’s survey will be essential for helping Government understand the impacts of COVID-19 on the early years sector. Now more than ever, it is essential that planning and investment are informed by real, on-the-ground data and that services continue to have a voice in Government decision-making. We are very grateful for your participation during this challenging time.

Where can I access the survey?

On PIP: Under My Services, click on View details for relevant DCYA Ref (if more than one service). Under Service Details, on right hand side of the page, click Service Profile Survey

On EYP: On the Early Years Portal homepage, click Service Profile Survey on the right side of the page.

Are guidelines available for filling out the form?

The Early Years Service Profile Guidelines 2019/2020 provides helpful tips for completing your survey.

You can also find these guidelines and a list of FAQs in the How to Guides section in PIP Resources or on Hive in the survey launch announcement.

Who do we contact for help?

If your service has any questions about the Early Years Service Profile, please contact the Early Years Provider Centre at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Early Years Team

Supporting Quality Childcare in Offaly

Offaly County Childcare Committee support the development of quality, affordable, inclusive, accessible childcare and family friendly services for all children in every part of the county.

Offaly County Childcare Committee has been meeting since May 2001 and is made up of representatives from the statutory sector, social partners, community groups, voluntary groups, the Community and Voluntary Forum, National Voluntary Children's Organisations, providers of childcare, and parents - all of whom have a vested interest in childcare provision in the county.

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