OSCAR (Out of School Care and Recreation)

Out of School Care and Recreation (OSCAR) Subsidy


The OSCAR (Out of School Care and Recreation) Subsidy is for children aged 5 to under 14 (or up to 18 years if they receive the Child Disability Allowance). It helps towards the costs of before-school and after-school care for up to 20 hours a week, and school holiday programmes for up to 50 hours a week.

You may be able to get this subsidy if you’re:

  • working, studying or on an approved training course, or
  • involved in an activity that Work and Income has asked you to do, or
  • a shift worker who works nights, or
  • seriously ill or disabled, or
  • caring for a child in hospital or for a child you get the Child Disability Allowance for.

You can’t get the OSCAR Subsidy if the child’s other parent or caregiver can take care of the child.

If you don’t know how many hours of care you’ll need each week (because you’re a casual or on-call worker for instance), we’ll talk with you about your options when you apply for a subsidy.

If you get the OSCAR Subsidy during the year, we’ll send you a form before the end of each school term to ask about your childcare needs for the school holidays and the next term. We can pay for more hours during the holidays.

If you need the OSCAR Subsidy just for the school holidays, you must apply before each holiday.

Changes to benefits and Childcare Assistance in April 2016

From April 2016 the Government is making changes to address child hardship. As part of the package to assist children living in hardship, benefit and Student allowance rates for families with dependent children will increase by $25 a week. The exact amount a client receives will depend  on any other allowance they get. Additional childcare assistance will be available so parents can work or take up education or training. There will also be new expectations around part-time work and an annual reapplication process for clients receiving sole parent support.

Increases to benefit payments and Childcare Assistance will be automatic. Clients affected by the change won’t have to do anything.

There is more information online at www.workandincome.govt.nz


How much you can get depends on the size of your family, your income, and how many hours a week your child goes to the childcare provider. All subsidies are paid directly to the childcare provider.

Number of children Gross weekly income* Childcare Subsidy (per hour, per child)
1 Less than $1,200.00 $4.00
$1,200.00 to $1,299.99 $2.79
$1,300.00 to $1,399.99 $1.55
$1,400.00 or more nil
2 Less than $1,380.00 $4.00
$1,380.00 to $1,489.99 $2.79
$1,490.00 to $1,599.99 $1.55
$1,600.00 or more nil
3 or more Less than $1,540.00 $4.00
$1,540.00 to $1,669.99 $2.79
$1,670.00 to $1,799.99 $1.55
$1,800.00 or more nil

Rates as at 1 April 2015

OSCAR: If you are planning on applying for WINZ subsidies, better to get it done sooner rather than later.This is how the process goes:

1 You will need to apply online via the Work and Income website. If you are a returning customer who has applied for a subsidy before you should receive a declaration letter automatically.
2 Bring OSCAR form to Community Networks  to be signed by the SHC Co-ordinator. (Please note forms will only be signed if a child has been registered and booked with Community Networks). In case there is more documentation needed. You may leave your form with Community Networks reception staff. They will be posted but if you prefer to post the form yourself you may collect them the following day. Please ensure Community Networks keeps a copy for our records.
3 We will then hold onto the forms and send them all in together before the holiday programme start to help ensure the payments come through faster.
4 OSCAR Subsidies are paid directly to the Community Networks School Holiday Club account. Once we know the outstanding amount you will receive an invoice via email.



To see if you qualify please click HERE