Best Start Plus Nursery Funding

About the Programme

The Trust will fund children aged 2 – 3 years old, for around 10 hours / 3 sessions of nursery/preschool per week (based on local provision) who have an identified developmental need or have faced or are facing challenges in their family.

Children can be referred by their Health Visitor or Family Care Co-ordinator.

This scheme is mainly for children who are aged 2 – 3 years old but not old enough to qualify for the Nursery Education Fund (free 20 hours).  The funding does extend to younger babies and toddlers where a parent has an illness or disability.

We will ask the referrer to complete a chart with the Ages and Stages Questionnaire Scores, along with any further information that might help.  Nurseries and Preschools will be required to monitor each child’s progress using the Prime Area Tracker and Involvement Scales on a termly basis.

We will only ask for information about the child’s development need.

NB: Children of a parent who is/are care leavers or a Looked After Child will qualify for support from Brightly.  Please contact The Coordinator, Larn-a-Lod, Rue du Coin, Grouville, JE3 9QR or

Who is eligible?

Children who are eligible for referral for September 2022 must be turning 3 between 1st September 2022 and 31st August 2023.

How to Apply

Children can be referred by their Health Visitor or Family Care Co-ordinator.

Applications are by referral form only Best Start referral form 2022

Holly’s story so far


Holly was identified by her Health Visitor at her two year check as not meeting her developmental milestones particularly in the areas of communication (her speech was very delayed) and social skills.  She was referred onto the Best Start Plus Nursery Funding Programme and started nursery in September 2019 thanks to the support of our funders.  Within a month the nursery had identified significant speech delay and an inability to interact with her peers.  She was referred for speech and language therapy which led to her referral onto the paediatric pathway for social and communication needs.  Additional support was advised and she was referred to the special Needs Inclusion Programme for additional JCCT support at nursery.

She now has a team of professionals setting targets and monitoring her development. If she hadn’t received the funding through Best Start Plus these needs would not have been identified and the support would have been delayed by a further 12 months minimum.  We know 80% of a child’s brain development happens before the age of 3 so the earlier we can support children the better the outcomes for them long term.

Holly’s mum attended our Christmas coffee morning at the very time Holly’s needs were being brought to a fore by nursery and the professionals involved.  Holly’s mum reached out to us during this session and has subsequently found additional support through our ability to sign post and guide her through an often very complicated system at a time when emotions, understandably, are extremely high.

Resilience is a skill you can learn and pass on to your kids and these workshops are a practical, informal and fun way of finding out how.  Families awarded places on our Assisted Nursery Scheme, can go on this course with a crèche, if needed, at no cost.

See what parents said about the Resilience Training Course… Resilience Training Parent Feedback 

How long can a family access the Programme?

The Programme lasts for one academic year.  Families start the Programme in September and finish in August the following year.

How can my family be considered for the Best Start Plus Nursery Funding Programme?

Speak to your Health Visitor or another professional that knows you and your family’s circumstances.  We can only take a referral from a professional that knows your family in some way.

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