Help with childcare costs

Find out what benefits and financial support you may be able to get

Tax-free childcare

You can get up to £500 every 3 months (up to £2,000 a year) for each of your children to help with the cost of childcare.

Claim tax-free childcare

30 hours free childcare

Eligible working families in England with 3 and 4 year old children can receive 30 hours of free childcare a week.

Visit Childcare Choices for more information

15 hours free childcare

Families in England who have 2 year old children and are on certain benefits can get 15 hours of free childcare a week.

All families with children aged 3 and 4 can also access 15 hours of free childcare a week.

Visit Childcare Choices for more information

Child Benefit

You can claim Child Benefit if you’re responsible for bringing up a child who is:

  • under 16
  • under 20 if they stay in approved education or training

Only one person can get Child Benefit for a child.

It’s paid every 4 weeks and there’s no limit to how many children you can claim for.

Claim Child Benefit

Claim back childcare costs

You may be able to claim back up to 85% of your childcare costs if you’re eligible for Universal Credit, with up to £646 back each month for one child or £1,108 for 2 or more children.

Find out more about claiming back childcare costs

Apply for free school meals

Free school meals are available to pupils in England if parents get certain benefits.

Check if your child can get free school meals

Holiday activities and food programme

You can get access to free activities and food for your children in the holidays if they receive free school meals.

Contact your local Council to find out more

National Breakfast Clubs

All participating schools will receive a 100% subsidy for breakfast club provision until the end of July 2022.

Find out more about the National School Breakfast Programme

Claim Healthy Start vouchers

If you’re more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4, you may be able to get help to buy healthy food and milk.

Check if you’re eligible for Healthy Start vouchers

Get help with maternity costs

You could claim a one-off payment of £500 to help towards the costs of having a child.

Check if you’re eligible for the Sure Start Maternity Grant

The Money Helper service provides free, confidential and impartial help tailored to individual needs.