Entrepreneur, actress and mother of two, Kelle Bryan has been named Ambassador for the Family and Childcare Trust, and will support their campaign to make British childcare more effective and affordable for working parents. Kelle is calling on parents to sign a petition asking the government to invest £535 million in improving the inflexible and expensive, existing Childcare system.
In 2017 parents of children aged two –four years old will be entitled to 30 hours free childcare with registered child-minders or nurseries – an increase from the current 15 hours parents receive. However the eighteen-month delay in implementing the increase, means that British parents will continue to struggle with expensive and limited childcare provisions until then.
“As a mum of two children aged 2 and 4 running a business, I have first hand experience of the challenges mums face both financially, emotionally and logistically as we attempt to build our careers, parent effectively and sustain a happy family life.
I am fortunate to have a wonderful nursery which provides 8am-6pm all year round childcare if need be, but many of my friends and colleagues are faced with limited and very expensive options often predicated by the area they live in.
We want the £535 million pounds saved from the delay, to be invested in making sure that by 2017 the childcare options available to parents truly support the needs of the family regardless of post code, work hours or disability,” said Kelle.
Julia Margo, chief executive at the Family and Childcare Trust said:
“The expansion of free childcare is really positive news for parents, but we’re concerned that right now parents are struggling to access the existing 15 hours of free childcare because childcare provision is so inflexible. The savings from the delay of the tax free scheme should be invested in flexible free childcare, so that local authorities and childcare providers are able to meet the needs of the thousands of working families expected to take up the 30 hours offer.”
Research and a recent report orchestrated by The Family and Childcare Trust found:
• 22 per cent of mothers who are not in paid employment cite childcare issues as a reason they are not able to work.
• 73 per cent of three and four year olds access free childcare in schools, fewer than half of which offer extended childcare provision outside school hours.
• Only 43% of local authorities in England have enough childcare for working parents,
with just 14% having enough childcare for parents working atypical hours or who have irregular work patterns (including many jobs in retail, including supermarket staff, in the health and social care sector including nurses and care workers and the hospitality sector, including restaurant and hotel staff).
Kelle’s call to action comes as the government considers how it will fund its ambitious plans to expand free childcare for three and four year olds to 30 hours a week from 2017.
To support the campaign please sign the petition http://chn.ge/1LSXIvK