Welcome to our latest FIS Newsletter!

Our newsletter is sent out every term and we hope you find the information useful. If there is anything you would like to see more of, please drop us a line at or give us a call on 01904 554444.  We would love to hear from you!

What's in this February 2022 edition:



There are lots of local activities and fun to be had in York this February half term! Head over to Shine! for inspiration and ideas on what activities are taking place. You may be surprised.... there are more than you think!

We will continually update content, as more venues provide information on activities, so do keep checking back.

If you know of any activities (including virtual ones) that are going ahead during the half-term week for 0 – 19 year olds (or activities specifically for children with disabilities and additional needs up to age 25 years),  tell us about them so we can promote them in Shine! and let other families know about them. Get in touch, using the contact details below or complete our online Get Listed form.

Please contact providers direct for more information or advice on how activities are being delivered in-line with current Government Covid guidelines.

Information on holiday and out of school clubs are being updated. If you are struggling to find childcare for during the February half-term holidays, get in touch with York Family Information Service email, call 01904 554444 or text 07786 202241

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Are you eligible for 2 year old funding? 

image of child on a bike

Is your child coming up to their 2nd birthday? Your child may be eligible for the 2 year funding which gives you up to 15 hours funded childcare at an Ofsted Registered 'Good' or 'Outstanding' childminder, playgroup or nursery. Please note additional charges may apply, such as charges for snacks, nappies or additional activities. Please speak to your chosen childcare provider for further information or contact us for a chat about childcare options and fees. 

You can check to see if you are eligible for the funding by looking at the eligibility criteria at the top of one of the 2 year old funding application form.  Applying for the funding does not affect your credit rating.  The funding becomes effective from the term after your child is 2 years old and continues to the term after they turn 3 years.  You can still apply if your child has already turned 2 years old.  For more information visit Yor-OK's Childcare page.

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Help paying for childcare 3 - 16

All 3 and 4 year old can receive up to 15 hours funded childcare a week during term time. All families need to do is tell their childcare provider they’d like to use their funded hours for their 3- or 4-year-old.  There is no application process to access the 15 hours for 3- and 4-year-olds.

Some 3- and 4-year-olds who have a parent (or both parents, if a two parent family) working at least 16 hours a week or earning the equivalent to working 16 hours a week at national minimum wage could be eligible to receive up to 30 hours funded childcare. To apply visit

Families who have either older children or do not meet the criteria as set out above for their younger children can still access financial support towards the cost of childcare. This includes:

  • Tax free childcare for 0 – 11 year olds
  • Tax Credits childcare and Universal credits for children for 0 – 16 year olds (under 17 if child is disabled) and support to study

For further information visit Childcare Choices at

For a list of childcare contact us at,  01904 554444 or text only 07786 202241

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New activities for Children and Young People

Here at York Family Information Service, we like to keep up to date with new services throughout the year. Whether you're looking for something to do with your baby, toddler, school age or teenage children, there is  always something happening in York. Here are just some of the new activities we have recently added to our search directory, available to join now:

Acomb Explore Pokémon Club               

Pokemon Club saturdays 9.30am - 10:30am at Acomb Explore library for 8 - 13 year oldsPokemon Club is aimed at children aged 8-13 and runs at Acomb Explore Library every Saturday.

The club is FREE but you will need to book a place for your child by visiting: 



Capoeira Muzenza 

Capoeira Muzenza classes are held across York and are grouped into ages: 3-8, 9-16 and adults classes. 

*Capoeira has acrobatic elements and in conjunction with its musical component, make it very attractive to children.

*Capoeira is a lot of fun and can be just what you need to get all those kids active and entertained. 

*Capoeira is a sport that develops stamina, endurance, physical co-ordination, equilibrium, flexibility and team spirit.

For more information visit: Muzenza York | Capoeira Muzenza York | England (

Ebor Lifesaving Club 

Ebor Lifesaving Club is a Lifesaving club that meets at Energise on Friday nights between 8:30 - 9:30, the club's is for capable swimmers 10-18 years old. You start at bronze and go to gold awards. Each category has, medallion, sport and open water award. To find out more information please message via Facebook: York Ebor Lifesaving Club - About (



Costume skills at York Theatre Royal

For Young People aged 13-17.

Learn weekly skills to produce and use props, costume and millinery. Sessions will focus on learning the process from page to stage and all the making in-between, with a mix of design techniques and practical construction skills using varied materials, textiles and structure. For more information please email:



Army Cadets 

"If you want to aim higher, feel more confident and get a head start on your future join the Army Cadets."

Every year thousands of young people and adult volunteers join the Army Cadets for fun, friendship, action and adventure.
We are an inclusive organisation for our cadets and adults. Our aim is to attract people of all backgrounds, ability and faith from our community.
Yorkshire North & West (YNW) ACF is one of the largest Counties and is open to young people of all backgrounds and abilities from 12 to 18 years old and currently in year 8 or above. Army Cadets in York is based at Queen Elizabeth barracks, Strensall. 

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Yor-Ok Website Focus on....

Job Vacancies 

York FIS supports the YorOK workforce by advertising vacancies working with children in York.  These vacancies include roles such as: after/out of school, apprenticeships, childminding, children's centre, nursery, pre-school play, admin, and volunteering opportunities. 

Young People

York's Young People Information Service provides information to any young person living in York up to age 25 years.

You can find information on a whole range of things, including mental health and well being, relationships, housing and LGBTQ+ and if you can't find what you're looking for - just ask!

Contact us by: Telephone: 01904 555400 (Mon - Fri 10am - 4pm); Email:  or use our Contact Us online form. You can also follow us on Facebook or Twitter to keep up to date with all the latest family and young people based 'need to know' information for York! Please note our new TEXT ONLY number: 07786 202241



Are you looking for childcare or do you know someone who is? We have a dedicated childcare page on our website which offers you all the information you need on finding childcare, childcare costs and funded childcare. We also offer a brokerage service for when finding childcare becomes challenging. 




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Young People's Website consultation

York’s Young People Information Service are seeking feedback from young people aged from secondary school age up to 25 years, on the Yor-OK Young People’s Survival Guide website. We want to know young people’s thoughts about the website, does it cover what young people really want to know? What do they like or dislike and what would be better if…

If you are the parent/carer of a young person or work with young people, please let them know about our consultation and encourage them to have their say!  The consultation is available at

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Help Shape the future of Midwifery education

The Midwife Education team are looking for participants to support the development of the new midwifery curriculum at the University of York. There are 2 sessions to be held on the following dates via zoom.

  • Thursday 3 March 12 - 1.30 pm
  • Tuesday 8 March 11.30 am - 1 pm 

if you are interested in taking part, please complete the Google Form highlighting your preferred date. 

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York Racial Equality Network - YREN

York Racial Equality Network (YREN) encourage friendship and harmony amongst people of all cultures and make our events inclusive for everyone to attend and we aim to include all communities and we stand up to discrimination and race hate. We provide individuals with free information and advice; and find ways for minority ethnic voices to be heard by those who run local services.

Their programmes and events are developed jointly with their members. YREN listen to their members lived experiences and concerns at their Open Forums, which inform their advocacy and policy work.

If you would like to become a Member of YREN, get in touch by emailing and do check out their website for further information and Twitter for weekly updates.

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Have you considered becoming a Childminder?

Registered childminders are professional child carers who work in their own homes to provide care and education for other people’s children. They are registered and inspected by OFSTED. There are currently approximately 130 childminders registered in the city of York.

Registered childminders are self-employed and are responsible for their own tax and National Insurance. They are not “employed” by parents but negotiate a contract for their service for which they charge a fee. It is important to remember that all childminders need to have an inclusion policy that ensures that every child’s needs are met.

Why should I consider becoming a childminder? Childminding is a rewarding career and provides opportunities for developing new skills and qualifications.

Childminding provides you with the opportunity to:

  • Contribute to children’s development and learning
  • Run your own business
  • Work from home
  • Provide a valuable service for your local community
  • Develop new skills and qualifications

How do I become a childminder? It is a big decision to become a childminder so it is important you have all the facts and make an informed decision. To help you to do this, book onto a free information session.

Prospective childminders may also need to complete an initial childminder training course before registering with Ofsted. This can be undertaken online through various providers. Attend our Childminder Information Session for further details.

In the city of York we are especially in need of childminders in the Bishopthorpe Road and Knavesmire areas.

Our next childminder Information sessions are:

  • Monday 21 February 6:30pm-8pm
  • Tuesday 22 March 2022 1 – 2:30pm

Bookable online at

Watch this Video from Pacey.  Discover all you need to know in Pacey’s guide to childminding, including what childminders do, becoming a childminder, how much it costs, working with other childminders and real stories you can relate to.   

Register your interest at or alternatively for more information contact

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Healthwatch York access to health and care

Healthwatch York, Healthwatch North Yorkshire and North Yorkshire County Council are working together to try and ensure more people are getting the health and care information they need in a format they can access.

The first stage of this is to hear about people’s good and bad experiences. So they have put together a survey in a range of formats and hope that you will help them by circulating the information and encouraging your service users / members to respond.

There is an online survey at:

If you would prefer to complete the survey by telephone, call Ruth Stockdale on 07458 301393 who will arrange for someone to call you at your convenience.

Healthwatch York are also arranging for the survey to be available in BSL. More information about this will be available on the Healthwatch North Yorkshire website, along with downloadable copies of the survey:

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SEND Updates

Help shape the future

We’re looking for young people and their families to help shape the future of SEND provision in York, as part of two projects.

We need people to take part in a series of focus groups to further develop the responses to the citywide Inclusion Review Survey, we ran last year.

We’re looking for young people aged 5 to 25, as well as parents or carers of children with SEND, to get involved.

We’re also looking for young people to help interview candidates who are looking to work in our SEND services. For more information on how the interview panels work, visit

To get involved in the focus groups or to put your name forward for the interview panels, email

New 'What's Next' booklet for Young People

The new updated ‘What’s Next’ booklet, outlining all things life, learning and work for young people aged 16 or over with Special Educational Needs and/or disabilities, has just been published.

This booklet outline:

  • Local Further Education in York
  • Residential Colleges
  • Personalised Learning and Work Experience Programmes
  • Supported Internships
  • Reviewing your plan
  • Help to find work
  • What your life might look like in York
  • Travel training
  • A list of useful contacts to help you make decisions about your next steps.

Check out the Local Offer Preparation for Adulthood Pages and read the What’s Next Booklet now

Communication and Engagement Survey

How well do we communicate and engage with you?

SEND Services at City of York Council and Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group are working to improve their communication and engagement with families.

We want to know if you’ve seen a difference in how we’re communicating with you now, compared to this time last year. Let us know by completing our new survey:

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Children's Centres Update 

York Children’s Centres are open to referral only groups and planned and bookable appointmentsIf you are a group leader and would like to return to using the centre or have any questions please contact York Family Information Service 01904 554444 

For more information about York's Children's Centres visit the Yor-OK Children Centre pages.

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Don't keep us a secret!                       

Don’t forget to tell your friends and family about York Family Information Service!

If you use Twitter or Facebook you can follow York Family Information Service online! Get the latest news and information about family life and events in York

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Register with the Information Service

Is your child under 3? By registering with our Information Service you will receive on an ad hoc basis tailored information about groups and activities, 2 year old funding and other information such as the opportunity to take part in research specific to the age of your child. Register online at

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Feedback - let us know about the service you have received

If you have any suggestions or comments about our newsletter and the types of articles featured or you have been in touch with us, we would like to hear from you! Your feedback helps us to know how effective we are, and how we can improve.

You can provide your feedback online at

If you have found us to be helpful, then please don't forget

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