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£2m funding boost for football activity clubs

A £2 million funding boost to football activity clubs that provide wrap-around childcare was announced yesterday by the Scottish Government.

The Government will double its investment in the Extra Time Programme, a joint initiative with the Scottish Football Association, from £2 million to £4 million for this financial year. The funding will support more free before and after school clubs, and holiday clubs for children from families on low incomes. It is hoped that this step will help more parents to enter or sustain employment or training, as part of Scottish Goverment's ambitions around the eradication of child poverty.

First Minister John Swinney made the announcement during a visit to Pollok United’s after-school activity club where he heard about the contribution innovative childcare options are making to the eradication of child poverty.
Mr Swinney said:

“We know funding from the Extra Time Programme is enabling football clubs and trusts to provide really valuable childcare options, particularly for families from low-income households who are most at risk of living in poverty. By removing barriers to affordable and accessible childcare, we will contribute to the eradication of child poverty. I will shortly set out further views on this crucial issue in Parliament.

“At the Nethercraigs Sports Facility, I saw children enjoying a healthy snack and fun activities including arts and crafts and sports. Parents have told Pollok United the service helps with food and childcare costs, relieving pressure on stretched family budgets.

“Like many others, I will be supporting Scotland at Euro 2024 when it gets underway in Germany this week. But the Extra Time Programme is a reminder that local football clubs are supporting communities here at home – providing valuable services beyond matchday. They understand the value of that support for local families, and they are well placed to provide crucial facilities and services.”

More information on the Extra Time Programme, and the clubs it currently supports, can be found by clicking here.

Extra Time Programme

Find out more about the Extra Time Programme and the clubs they currently support.

Visit the website