The NSW Government has reengineered what was once the Active Kids voucher program and the Creative Kids voucher program, with the new Active and Creative Kids voucher program to launch next month.
The program will provide eligible families with two $50 vouchers per school-aged child, per year which can be used to pay for certain activities offered by registered providers.
Such activities include sports like athletics, AFL, netball, and soccer, as well as creative ventures such as dance, singing, and music lessons.
Eligible businesses and organisations are being urged to apply to become official providers of the program ahead of the vouchers being made available to families in February.
“Providers who have signed up for previous voucher programs will need to reapply to accept the new Active and Creative Kids voucher,” said Tina Dougherty, Service NSW Business Bureau acting executive director.
“With the busy holiday season and back to school rush underway, we are encouraging them to sign up as soon as they can to avoid any last-minute rush.”
Which families are eligible to receive two $50 vouchers per child in 2024?
Parents and guardians of around 600,000 children living in NSW will be able to access the vouchers in 2024, according to the Minns Government.
That’s less than half the 1.35 million children that were eligible for $100 vouchers through the previous program.
The reason for the variation is new means tests.
To receive the vouchers in 2024, parents and guardians must be receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A and/or Family Tax Benefit Part B.
By making the change, and reducing the value of the vouchers to $50, the cost of the program has been slashed from an estimated $190 million in 2022-2023 to an estimated $28 million in 2024.
“This is a tough but economically responsible decision,” NSW Premier Chris Minns said on announcing the change last year.
“I want kids from low and middle income families participating in sport, creative activities, and learning to swim.
“This new program ensures we can continue these important initiatives in a fairer, more sustainable way.”
The new vouchers will be provided at the start of terms one and three this year.
Parents and guardians of eligible children will be able to apply to receive the first $50 Active and Creative Kids voucher next month.
Until then, eligible families can apply for and use the previous Active Kids voucher and Creative Kids vouchers, but they won’t be able to be redeemed after 31 January.
The Minns Government also extended the existing $50 First Lap swim voucher program for 12 months from mid-2023.
Image by Jyotirmoy Gupta on Unsplash.