Mayor of London invests £150,000 in support for early years providers
By Rachel Lawler
The Mayor of London has announced a £150,000 investment designed to support early years providers In the capital.
The hubs are designed to be a one-stop-shop for sector-specific business support, information, advice and guidance with a focus on sustainability and growth.
The announcement comes shortly after research revealed that 64% of nurseries and 56% of childminders in the city said that they consider their services to be at immediate risk of closure or to be facing potential closure within the next 12 months.
The Mayor also continues to call on the Government to support early years providers with better funding in the long term.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, commented: “London’s early years sector is a lifeline for so many families, providing their children with high-quality education and care and giving them the best possible start in life. But these nurseries and childminders have been hit hard by the pandemic, and many are facing a battle to survive.
“That’s why I’m proud to be working with the Early Years Alliance and CEEDA to give nurseries and childminders across the capital the support they need to continue their life-changing work. By investing in London’s early years education sector, I’m investing in our social and economic recovery, and in our future as a city, and urge the government to do the same.”
Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, said: "With the combined impact of the Covid-19 crisis and years of government underfunding placing a huge practical and financial strain on many early education and care providers, this investment into London’s early years sector is now both much-needed and hugely welcome.
“Since the start of the pandemic, early years businesses have been forced to fight for every bit of support they have received, and there is no doubt that this has taken its toll on the mental health and wellbeing of the early years workforce. That’s why we are so pleased to be working with the Mayor to deliver this innovative programme, which will empower early years business leaders to return their settings to a firmer footing as we move out of lockdown and towards recovery.
“We know that Covid-19 restrictions have had a significant impact on the learning, development and wellbeing of young children. It is vital, therefore, that early years provision in London can remain open for business and continue delivering the high-quality care and education that children and families need and deserve. The business support, training and tailored interventions that this programme offers will play a huge role in ensuring they are able to do so."
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