Early childhood development centres must apply for relief funding: social development

The department of social development has called on early childhood centres (ECDs) to apply for government relief funding. File photo.
The department of social development has called on early childhood centres (ECDs) to apply for government relief funding. File photo.
Image: iStock Images

The department of social development has called on early childhood centres (ECDs) to apply for relief funding made available through the presidential employment stimulus.

The stimulus was introduced by President Cyril Ramaphosa in October last year and is aimed at providing financial relief to sectors affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Of the R100bn set aside, R13bn was allocated for the current financial year. The remaining R87bn will be allocated in the next three years.

The department on Monday said it has completed 7, 343 applications which will benefit 35,794 employees. The department has received 27,068 applications through the GovChat app.

The employment stimulus seeks to provide relief to 110,000 ECD practitioners. The deadline for applications is Friday February 19. ECD practitioners will receive a maximum of R4,470, capped at a maximum of four employees, depending on the availability of funds, said the department.

According to the latest presidential employment stimulus progress report, registered and unregistered centres are eligible to apply for funding.

“All appointed social workers have commenced work. The department of social development is working closely with its partners in its ECD sector to distribute income support for workers in registered and unregistered ECD programmes.”

The department said ECD centres play a vital role in the development of young children.

“The first 1,000 days of life for children are pivotal for a child’s human development. Optimising the early years of children’s lives is the best investment the country can make in ensuring the children’s future is a success,” it said.

“Early childhood development also contributes to income generation for the majority of women and youth in our country.”

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