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Norfolk early childhood community fund scheme

Getting back to Parent and Toddler group

We recognise the vital importance of these groups in providing local networks of support to parents and carers, and the funding available in order to support as many local groups as possible to re-open once they feel they are able, and it is safe to do so.

Following the announcement of the government’s roadmap on Monday 22 February the following applies to the re-opening of Parent and Child groups:

  • From 29 March 2021 - outdoor parent and child groups can operate with up to 15 attendees. Children under five years of age do not count towards the attendee limit.
  • From 12 April 2021 – indoor parent and child groups can operate with up to 15 attendees. Children under five years of age do not count towards the attendee limit.
  • From 17 May 2021groups must have no more than 30 attendees (indoors and outdoors). Children aged under 5 years and someone who is working as part of the group, such as a group leader, are not counted in the number. This of course is a maximum number and your own risk assessment will determine how many families can safely attend your venue.
  • No earlier than 21 June 2021 – no legal limit on numbers inside or outside.

It is important to remember that these dates are dependent on various COVID-19 criteria being met and are not set in stone. Further updates will be provided once the regulations are published.

COVID-19 recovery grant

To support parent and toddler groups, the “COVID-19 recovery grant” of up to £500 per group will continue to be available up to 31 October 2021 in recognition that not all existing groups have appropriate resources and funding to manage the required expectations.

This small grant will enable groups to ensure they can purchase good quality toys and equipment that can be cleaned effectively and regularly, as well as room dividers/furniture that will enable spaces to be managed into smaller areas to minimise infection transfer. It can also be used to provide resources to support groups to keep in touch with families during lockdown such as online delivery and resource packs. 

This is open to all groups that meet the criteria for the Early Childhood Community Fund.  More information is available in our Early Childhood Community Fund Guidance.

Early Childhood Community Fund COVID-19 recovery grant application form

Getting back to Parent and Toddler group online sessions

For leaders of local parent and toddler groups, we recognise there may be additional challenges and considerations in order to re-open services to children and families. All group leaders will need to consider how they are able to follow government guidance about social distancing and minimising infection transfer for participants. You might like to come along to one of our online Getting back to Parent and Toddler group sessions. The session focuses on all the things you need to know and put in place to make sure your provision is COVID-19 secure.

These are taking place on the following date:

  • Thursday 10 June 2-4pm
  • Tuesday 6 July 6-8pm
  • Tuesday 3 August 10am-12pm

Further dates will be arranged subject to demand.

To book a place contact cs-0-5 

Training programme for Parent and Toddler Group Leaders

We are pleased to launch our Summer training programme with some new and familiar courses available. View our full new training programme.

If you are interested in attending any of our online sessions, complete the Community Offer Training Booking and Expression of Interest form or email us at with the session and date you wish to attend with a second choice if possible. We will set up further online sessions to meet demand over the next few weeks.

Norfolk Parent and Toddler Group Leaders Facebook group

We have a Facebook group for all leaders (prospective and existing) of Parent and Toddler Groups in Norfolk. When joining, you'll need to answer the joining questions so we can approve your request.

Join Norfolk Parent and Toddler Group Leaders on Facebook

Thinking about setting up a new parent and toddler group or expanding an existing one?

We recognise families may need, local, affordable, safe and stimulating places to go with their children even more once we are through the Covid-19 pandemic, so please continue to talk with us and engage us in any ideas and plans.

In line with government guidance, unfortunately our workers will not be able to arrange face to face meetings with you to support the set up or expansion of parent and toddler groups. All other aspects of Community Offer work remains unchanged.

As detailed below you can continue to:

  • If you are thinking of setting up a new group or expanding an existing one email us at to let us know when would be a good time to call.
  • On receipt of your email you will be offered the advice and support you need, such as our guidance and application form and our Setting up a parent and toddler guide. 

About the grants

Community groups that support young children and their parents in Norfolk, can apply to the Early Childhood Community Fund.

The Norfolk early childhood community fund scheme aims to:

  • Help children age 0-5 to achieve their developmental milestones
  • Ensure children and their parents or carers are not lonely or isolated
  • Increase opportunities for parents to come together and take part in fun activities, alongside their child
  • Deliver local services for young children and their parents within their community

How much are the grants?

Grants of up to £2,500 are available per organisation per financial year.

What can a grant be used for?

It will fund the start-up of new activities and groups or to increase the capacity of an existing parent and toddler group (e.g to run extra sessions or days to allow more families to attend)

It won’t fund standalone requests for resources or equipment for existing groups that are not increasing their capacity to allow more families to attend (We may be able to signpost existing groups to other sources of funding for this purpose.)

For more information check out our Early Childhood Community Fund Guidance. We have also developed our “How to guide - Setting up and running a parent and toddler group” which you may find helpful.

How to apply for a grant

There is a two stage application process:

  • Step 1: Contact us
    Email us at with your name, contact details and which area of Norfolk you are planning to deliver your group. We will use this information to allocate a member of the team to you, who will discuss your ideas with you and can offer additional advice, support and guidance. Following this and if appropriate, you will be encouraged and supported to complete a full application form.
  • Step 2: Full application
    Once you have received any advice and support you require from the team, we will notify you that you can complete the full application, which will then be sent for consideration.

When can I apply?

Submitting your application

Once you are happy with your application it should be returned with any other supporting documents to

Your allocated worker will inform you of any deadline dates that you need to be aware of. Please see the guidance for information regarding the decision making and funding award processes.

If you have any questions about making an application, or need to receive these forms in other formats email us at

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