Regional families will receive even more support with the Nationals in Government announcing a further round of funding for Early Childhood and Education services – part of a $755 million boost to support regional areas experiencing the State’s worst drought on record.

Deputy Premier and NSW Nationals Member for Monaro John Barilaro said a further $5.2 million was to be invested to support preschools and long day care centres in drought-affected areas across the State.

“This is the first time the Nationals in Government are expanding the Drought Relief funding to include long day care centres as well as community preschools, because we know the drought doesn’t discriminate based on the type of service a child attends,” Mr Barilaro said. “The drought is impacting our regional communities as a whole, which is why we are delivering a holistic package that provides support to our local businesses and services.”

NSW Nationals Minister for Education and Early Childhood Learning Sarah Mitchell said the program would help ease the financial burden of the drought on young families, whilst also ensuring participation in a preschool program is maintained.

“Services in areas such as Monaro can use this funding to assist families and children in a range of ways, including travel arrangements to maintain participation in early childhood education, crisis planning or fee subsidies to further support families,” Ms Mitchell said.

Minister for Agriculture and Western NSW Adam Marshall said the program was part of the Government’s latest drought assistance package, designed to alleviate the sting of drought on farmers and regional communities.

“Across the State our farmers and regional communities are experiencing one of the worst droughts in living memory. That’s why the NSW Government has delivered a $755 million drought assistance package to help support our rural communities through these difficult times,” Mr Marshall said.