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Childcare at Home: Voluntary Approval Scheme

The Childcare at Home Voluntary Approval Scheme provides an extra level of reassurance for parents looking to have their children looked after in their own home.

It aims to raise the standard of home-based care and allow greater numbers of parents using this form of childcare to access the Childcare Element of the Working Tax Credit or use Childcare Vouchers.

Anyone, other than a close relative who provides childcare in the child’s home may apply to become an approved childcare worker.

In order to become approved under this scheme, childcare workers must:

  • Be aged 18 or over
  • Hold a Level 2 qualification in early years and childcare (or higher)
  • Hold a first aid certificate
  • Have received enhanced Criminal records Bureau (CRB) clearance

Application to the scheme costs £104, and the approval is then valid for a year.

From 1 April 2011, the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW) became the approval body for the scheme.

Voluntary Approval Scheme
Government Offices
Sarn Mynach
Llandudno Junction
LL31 9RZ
Tel: 0300 062 5609

Benefits to Parents

By using a nanny approved under this scheme, there is a greater level of reassurance that the person you are employing has met the minimum requirements, including an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau check.  The scheme also provides confirmation that the person holds a recently acquired first aid certificate and a suitable child care qualification.

Using an approved nanny means you may also be eligible for Working Tax Credit or other financial help such as employer supported childcare.

For more information on eligibility for the Working Tax Credit, please contact HM Revenue and Customs on 0845 300 3900.

Benefits to Nannies

By taking part in the Voluntary Approval scheme, you benefit from being part of a scheme that will be recognised Wales-wide.

The scheme recognises that you have met basic requirements for child care including an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau check, suitable child care qualification and current first aid certificate.

There is also the possibility of increased opportunity for employment by parents who may be able to claim tax credits for using approved child care.

For full details on the application process, including qualifications and frequently asked questions, please click here:

Voluntary Approval Scheme



A nanny is employed to look after your child in your own home. Nannies do not need to have formal childcare qualifications, but many do have nursery nurse or other qualifications in childcare. There is no national nanny register at present. Unless they are looking after more than two families, nannies are not inspected by the CSSIW like other carers, so parents are responsible for interviewing and checking references. Family helpers usually work alongside the parent helping with childcare and general housework. Both family helpers and nannies can either ‘live in’ or come to your home on set days or hours. Some families choose to have a ‘nanny share’ arrangement as a way of making this choice more affordable.