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to ask for help with childcare

(10 Posts)
Fpmd1710 Sat 30-Apr-16 23:19:36

I've been out of work the last 4 months, but I've just got a new job. I need to put DS into childcare for the days I'm in work but obviously I have to pay an admin fee and a months upfront fees (almost £500) before he starts. I went into the Job Centre to inform them of my change in circumstances and was hoping to be able to apply for a budget loan to help with the upfront costs. I got told that as I haven't been out of work for at least 6 months then I'm not eligible, I also got told that if I had been out of work for 6 months then I would have actually had the admin fee and first 2 weeks childcare paid (without having to pay anything back) as well as a further 4 weeks rent whilst I 'settled into paying bills again' (JC woman's words).
Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I should have been eligible for the fees to just be paid, nor for my rent to still get paid but I think that a budget loan should be available for all, not just those out of work for over 6 months as I would obviously be paying it back. Instead I have to some how come up with almost £500 in just two weeks and I've no idea how I'm going to do that without some kind of help. AIBU to have expected more help?

RaeSkywalker Sun 01-May-16 05:17:35

YANBU, it's a shame that the JC can't exercise a bit of discretion to override the 'rules' here. The first thing I would do is call CAB, and see if they know of any funding you can access/ way you can delay payment of the fees.

I guess if CAB can't help, you have a few options:

- Go into your overdraft/ arrange an overdraft? Only do this if you know you can pay it off once you get paid.
- do you have a mortgage, or are you renting? My friend had her mortgage payments put on hold for 2 months when she was looking for work.
- can you borrow money from friends/ relatives? I know that this isn't ideal though.
- can friends/ relatives care for your DC until you can afford the nursery fees?
- see if your new employer will delay your start date for a couple of months.
- turn down the job and start hunting in 2 months.
- sell something of value.
- speak to the nursery and see if they can help.

Finally, are you sure that the £500 is the extent of the fees that will be due before your first payday? You won't have to pay another month's fees beforehand?

Really hope that you manage to sort something out, it must be very stressful flowers

RaeSkywalker Sun 01-May-16 05:18:42

Oh, just saw that you're paying rent- ignore my mortgage idea! Sorry- my ability to read is clearly hindered by lack of sleep blush

Widdykinkles Sun 01-May-16 05:39:53

Your local council should have an emergency fund you may be eligible for help from. Where I am, it is the county council who administer that, not district council.

wheresthel1ght Sun 01-May-16 06:51:15

Look for a childminder rather than nursery? They don't expect payment up front ime and often the care is better

And for what it's worth, I was out of work for 2 years and the job centre refuses to help with any fees hence dd being with her cm.

Fpmd1710 Sun 01-May-16 10:17:20

I've asked my mum for a loan but she is struggling financially herself right now, and she works full time so can't look after DS either, and I live too far from extended family. The only thing I have to sell is DS's cot bed which I've been offered £70 for so that's going this week and DS can sleep with me (not ideal but desperate times). Unfortunately between making bad choices in my early 20's and struggling to keep up with bills these past few months, my credit is too poor to get a loan/overdraft.
Where I live there is only 1 local (4.5 miles) CM but she is full right now and I don't drive so can't look at CM's outside the area.
Ex DP has offered to lend me whatever birthday money he gets this week but other than that he couldn't afford to pay any extra maintenance. So now I'm just having to wait and see how much money he is gifted for his birthday.
Failing that though I feel like the only thing left to do is give up the position and look again in a couple months, but I really don't want to do that, it's ideal being just a few minutes from home and I feel like I'm going insane not being in work, where I live is not easily accessible for friends and family who live out the area and don't drive, and I can't afford the bus and train fairs it takes to visit them, so unless my mum pops round I can often go days without seeing or speaking to anybody but the dog and DS who is only 18 months
I'm just cheesed off that, according to the woman in JC, I would receive more help if I just intentionally kept myself out of work for a couple of extra months.

stickystick Sun 01-May-16 10:36:12

Here's another idea OP - left field but worth a shot if you have no other alternatives and have nothing to lose.

Explain the situation to your new employer and ask if they have a system of staff loans or any other support that might be able to help. Depends on the employer but £500 is a price worth paying for many, because good staff are surprisingly hard to find & expensive to recruit. When you think about it, childcare deposits are really no different to season ticket loans, which lots of employers offer so their employees can get to work.

The other place to try is Gingerbread, the single parents charity, which has been campaigning on this issue.

stickystick Sun 01-May-16 10:38:06

Oh one other thing - might be worth checking CMs a little further away because sometimes they do pick ups in their own cars, either from your house or from a designated pick up point like a train station.

thisisnotausername Sun 01-May-16 10:40:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Fpmd1710 Sun 01-May-16 18:56:17

Sticky I'm only going to be earning minimum wage in a pub restaurant so can't really imagine I'll be able to ask them for a loan, however I will look up Gingerbread, I'd not heard of them before so thank you.
Notausername I'm going to ring the nursery and ask if there is any way I can pay weekly just for the first few weeks, rather than the month upfront, that would mean I'd only have to find £250 upfront and I've been assured that tax credits will have been adjusted so they can help pay the following weeks.

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