Free childcare for mums to book cervical screening tests

Published Monday, 8th April 2019
Childminders with the children they care for, at the bandstand in Clifton Park
Rotherham childminders with the children they care for

Rotherham mums are being offered an hour’s free childcare so they can attend potentially life-saving cervical screening.

Childcare providers in Rotherham are joining others from across the country in offering to look after children for free to encourage mums to get tested. The initiative coincides with a campaign from Public Health England which aims to increase screening rates which have dropped to a 20-year low.

So far, 48 registered day nurseries and childminders across Rotherham are offering one hour’s free childcare, and it is thought more will take part as news of the scheme spreads.

Rebecca Mughal, who runs Safe and Sound Childminding in central Rotherham said, “I’ve had friends and know childminders that have had cancer. It’s horrible that children can be left without their mums or grandparents. I know that mums are really busy between looking after their children, work and other commitments, so it’s really important that everyone has the opportunity to go along to their cervical screening appointments.

“The idea came from a fellow childminder who offered free childcare to a busy mum who’d not had chance to go to her appointment because of childcare issues. Her story spread through the childminder network on social media, and it’s really spiralled from there. I let fellow Rotherham childminders know that I was going to offer this and asked who else was on board and where they were based so we could start to spread the word to parents.”

Cllr David Roche, Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care added, “It’s really important that women go for their cervical screening. It’s a five minute test and could save your life. We’re really pleased to hear about the support on offer from childcare providers in Rotherham, especially at a time when screening rates are so low.”

To find out details of childcare providers, contact Rotherham Families Information Service. Anyone interested in becoming a childminder can also get in touch for information about available courses.

Email Rotherham Families Information Service

Call Rotherham Families Information Service: 0800 0730230