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How to Prepare for Maternity/Parental Leave Part 4: CCB & Canadian Childcare Subsidies and Grants

This is the part 4 of a 4 part series that you can read on your own or attend an Online 1 hour Workshop with similar information. Email ruthysiemens@gmail.com to register for the next monthly workshop!


Part 3: RESP Planning


Thankfully, I haven't had to pay for childcare for many years thanks to my wonderful parents, which was such a privilege and a blessing to our family.


The most we ever paid for full time child care for 2 children ages 1 and 3 years old, was $1000 for one month for one individual caregiver in our home. That was a lot of money back in 2012 and still is a lot of money today!


Canada Child Benefit: non taxable

For the 2023–2024 benefit year that began in July, 

maximum annual benefit is

$7,437 < age 6

and

$6,275 for each child ages 6 to 17

The only thing that you have to do to obtain this benefit payment is to file your taxes.


Feel free to check out my other previous posts about blogpost: Free Money for Canadian Families for some of the other sources of benefits for families like CCB, Alberta Child and Family Benefit, Canada Workers Benefit, Canada Learning Bond and Canada Education Savings Grant, etc.


Federal Child Care Initiative:

Goal: average fee for childcare should fall to $15 per day, en route to the goal of $10 per day in 2026.



Canada in collaboration with Alberta, Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement - 2021 to 2026

Goal:

Achieve an average of $10 per day by fiscal year 2025 to 2026

  • Alberta will raise the annual income threshold from its $90,000, to $180,000 per year in 2022. 

Use our subsidy step model that provides the highest subsidy rates to those with the lowest income.

In years 1 and 2, families can expect the following:

  • those earning an income up to $119,999  subsidy will reduce their program fee to an average of $10 per day

  • income $120,000 and $179,999 subsidy reduce their program fee to an average between $11 and $17 per day

  • > $180,000 fees will pay $22.19 per day on average

Which I think is lower than the $1000 that I was paying for 2 children in 2012 so hopefully these initiatives are becoming effective.


Alberta Childcare Initiatives:

Fees will be lowered in 2 ways – expanded subsidy and affordability grants.


Subsidy: is Income Based

Subsidy: 0 to kindergarten-age (in kindergarten and also attending child care during regular school hours) has been expanded to include families with a gross household income of up to $180,000.

Subsidy: kindergarten to Grade 6 (licensed program outside of regular school hours) with a household income of up to $90,000.


Grants: are facility based

Affordability grants will also be provided directly to child care operators so they can further lower fees for all families. 

Parents do not need to apply to benefit from the grant fee reduction.







There is a Childcare Subsidy Calculator that you can use to see how much you could potentially save.


Plus:

Childcare Affordability Grant:


Should save all Albertans approximately $200/month!


However the tricky part is finding a qualified childcare provider that participates in this program to receive the appropriate grant and therefore reduction in fees.


Example of what the Government Children Initiative is supposed to do:

A family earning $120,000/year with an infant attending a licensed facility-based centre full time currently pays on average $1,172 per month. 

By 2022, this family can expect to pay an average of $284 per month.

By year 5, families using licensed childcare in Alberta will pay an average of $10 per day.


You can also look up Provincially Funded and Regulated Childcare providers and see if they have been audited or investigated, click here to look up one that you are researching.


Again, I will repeat that you need to make sure that you file your taxes in order to receive your appropriate subsidy.


Another way that a reduction in childcare fees can benefit parents, is that they can use these savings to contribute your child's RESP!


$2500 divided by 12 months = $208/month ensures that you receiving the matching 20% from the Canadian Government via the CESG


Could you afford to use the $200/month savings to invest towards your child's RESP?


Now Go and Be Intentional with your Childcare subsidies and grants!


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