28 November 2011
Warracknabeal families have received an early Christmas gift with news that Federal Government could soon reinstate slashed Take-a-Break funding.
Nationals Senator for Victoria Bridget McKenzie has expressed her delight with an “about-face” from the Gillard Government to restore funding for Victoria’s occasional childcare services.
Labor joined with the Coalition, Greens and Independents to support a motion calling for the reinstatement of $12 million in Federal Government support for occasional care.
Senator McKenzie was particularly pleased with the passing of this motion, commenting: “For Victoria, this is extremely welcome news with up to 9000 families and 200 occasional care centres set to lose any form of government support for this service in just over a month.”
“Many constituents contacted my office disappointed that they could no longer access Take-a-Break childcare services. Occasional care programs such as Take-a-Break are often the only form of childcare available to families in small towns,” she said.
“The funding cuts presented a cruel blow to communities. I hope this vital $12 million package, removed from the 2010 and 2011 Federal Budgets, is restored as soon as possible.”
Warracknabeal Neighbourhood House and Learning Centre manager Angela Williams described the news as “absolutely fantastic”.
“We are absolutely delighted here, as I’m sure every parent in Warracknabeal is also, not to mention our two Take-a-Break employees,” she said.
“Receiving the news just before the Christmas cut-off is the best Christmas present ever.”
Yarriambiack Shire Councillor, and Take-a-Break advocate, Kylie Zanker said while she had yet to hear reports of the push for reinstatement of funding, it was “terrific” news.
“It is absolutely fantastic and the learning outcomes for parents and children will be mammoth,” Cr Zanker said.
“Particularly for those children in smaller communities where there are minimal, or no, other childcare options,” she said.“It is absolutely fantastic, terrific news.”