day care or creche
  • All early child development facilities in South Africa can now apply to get a cash payment for their employees from government.
  • They have less than two weeks to apply to get a maximum of R4,470 per staff member. 
  • If they're not open yet, they must commit to opening their doors within 60 days of receiving the money.
  • For more articles, go to

The department of social development has set up a R496 million fund to assist South Africa’s early childhood development (ECD) facilities – including crèches, day care services and nurseries.

The pandemic has devastated many of these facilities, who couldn’t open for months due to government regulations. Once they were allowed to reopen, many children didn’t return as their parents lost their jobs during lockdown.

READ | The kids are not ok: How the lockdown is hurting our children

The Early Childhood Development Stimulus Relief Fund (ECD-ESRF) will now pay out a maximum once-off payment of R4,470 per staff member of these facilities. Each centre can only apply for up to four staff members. Staff can also include cooks, administrators and other workers.

The application process for the money is only open for two weeks – from 5 to 19 February 2021.

READ | How lockdown has impacted childcare centres in South Africa

Only the operator of the ECD service can apply – not individual staff members. Only one application per facility can be made.

If a childcare facility has not yet reopened due to Covid-19, they will need to make a commitment to reopen within 60 days of receiving the money.

Before making an application, applicants must ensure that they have a banking account under the name of the ECD service.

All ECD facilities can apply – including those who are not registered with their provincial social development departments. They can register here:

To apply for the funding, go to

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