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The NSW Government is helping kids get creative with the new Creative Kids program.

Parents, guardians and carers can apply for a voucher with a value of up to $100 per calendar year for each school-enrolled child to participate in creative activities.

The voucher may be used with an approved activity provider for registration, participation and tuition costs for performing arts, visual arts, coding, languages, literary, music and other eligible creative and cultural activities.

Program information

What is Creative Kids?

Creative Kids is a program to help NSW families meet the cost of getting their kids into creative and cultural activities like, drama, music, dance, coding, languages and other eligible activities.

From 1 January 2019, the NSW Government will provide a voucher of up to $100 for parents/guardians/carers, which can be redeemed towards payment of lesson and activity costs with an approved provider registered with the Creative Kids program.

The program will allow eligible recipients to receive one voucher per eligible child each calendar year for 4 years commencing 1 January 2019.

The voucher can only be used one time with one provider. If an activity costs less than $100, the balance of the voucher cannot be redeemed.

When does the Creative Kids rebate program start?

From 1 January 2019, parents/guardians/carers can claim up to $100 voucher for each eligible school enrolled child, by applying online through the MyServiceNSW Account.

After the start date, approved providers registered with the Creative Kids program can accept and redeem valid vouchers from recipients.

When will the program finish?

This is a 4-year program that is currently planned to run until 31 December 2022.

Definitions for providers

What is a provider?

To be a provider with Creative Kids, your organisation must deliver a structured activity within the eligible activity list and be an approved provider registered with the Creative Kids program prior to participating in the program and accepting vouchers.

These could be:

  • art galleries
  • art classes or workshops
  • conservatoriums
  • music and drama groups
  • language schools
  • arts and cultural workers and private businesses offering programs in the creative and cultural space
  • for-profit or not-for-profit activity providers located in NSW.

Eligible activities are those that are provided as part of a structured program where there are clear skill development outcomes. The primary purpose is for children to learn or participate in a specific creative or cultural activity. The activity must demonstrate value for money and be relevant to the age and skill level of participants.

The following are eligible structured activity types:

  • learning and developing a specific creative skill (private or group based) delivered in person or 'virtually'* through a set of lessons/activities/workshops

  • cultural and creative learning experiences that provide skills and knowledge of cultural identity: for example, Aboriginal cultural learning workshops

  • membership fees or hiring instruments/equipment that are part of a structured program.

  • structured participation and learning activity package: for example, a concert/performance/exhibition tour followed by a structured interactive workshop

  • masterclass or question time with a high-profile artist/performer, relating to skills and artform development. 

All activities are to be delivered outside of the school curriculum. NSW public, private and Catholic schools are ineligible providers.

Providers must apply and be approved by Service NSW to be registered with Creative Kids.

What is a high risk activity and what additional documents are required?

Indicators of 'high' risk activities are:

  • water based
  • physical contact
  • those requiring specialised safety equipment
  • dangerous or extreme, such as circus.

Additional insurance requirement

Providers whose activities are deemed high risk activities are required to have public liability insurance coverage of at least $20 million.

What is the definition of a low risk activity?

Low risk activities are those that do not have 'high risk' indicators, as above. Providers whose activities are deemed low risk only are required to have public liability insurance coverage of at least $10 million.

How do I find a list of registered providers?

You can search and find a Creative Kids provider.

What are the included activity categories for Creative Kids?

Visual arts

  • Drawing
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
  • Sketching
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Advertising
  • Public art
  • Screen
  • Media arts
  • Design
  • Multimedia
  • Craft
  • Other Visual Arts.

Creative industries

  • Architecture
  • Coding
  • Industrial design
  • Game design
  • Augmented/virtual reality
  • Graphic design
  • Fashion design
  • Radio
  • Robotics.

Literary and linguistics arts

  • Creative writing
  • Languages
  • Publishing
  • Public speaking
  • Poetry
  • Spoken word
  • Slam poetry.

Performing arts

  • Music
  • Drama
  • Singing
  • Circus arts
  • Choreography
  • Parkour
  • Theatre
  • Dance
  • Other Performing Arts.

Cultural experiences

Structured learning activities with a focus on strengthening Aboriginal and culturally diverse community practices.

Provider eligibility

What is the eligibility criteria to be a Creative Kids provider?

To register as a provider with the Creative Kids program, you must deliver a creative or cultural program and meet the following provider requirements:

  • be based or have a physical presence in NSW
  • hold a current ABN, and must not have any outstanding actions or enforcement orders recorded by the Office of Fair Trading (ensure that your details are up to date with the Australian Business Register)
  • have a child safe policy or complete the Child Safe eLearning module provided by Office of the Children's Guardian
  • obtain Working With Children Check clearance for all staff and/or volunteers who work with children
  • hold current Certificates of Currency for Indemnity and Insurance policies appropriate to the type and level of activities being delivered.

Provider Qualification Requirements

Providers must hold appropriate skills, experience, or qualifications for the activities provided, including appropriate accreditation for high-risk activities for example, circus activities.

Providers with 1 to 5 employees must provide an overview of the qualifications and experience that their staff hold to teach the chosen activities, including at least 1 of the following criteria:

  • 2 or more years of professional experience in a relevant field
  • a teaching degree and practical experience in a relevant field
  • a degree or tertiary qualification in a relevant field i.e. fine arts, drama, music
  • awards, industry recognition or accreditation in a relevant field.

For cultural experiences, be a cultural elder or provider within that culture recognised by their community as having the appropriate cultural knowledge to pass on.

If you do not meet the requirements above but provide an eligible activity that is:

  • in rural or remote NSW
  • to children with disabilities, or
  • delivering cultural experiences to children by a recognised indigenous elder,

please register your interest to: creativekids@create.nsw.gov.au participate in the program and provide details of your program for assessment.

Service NSW reserves the right to contact you during the application process to discuss the application and may need to refer to other government agencies to complete the assessment. We will assess all requests and our decision is final around eligibility.

What is a child safe policy and how do I complete the Child Safe eLearning module?

Information about the child safe policy and the Child Safe eLearning can be found on the Office of Children's Guardian website. There are 8 eLearning units, which take approximately 6 hours to complete.

I believe that my activity program qualifies for Creative Kids program. Should I apply?

Yes, apply for the program.

Your organisation needs to meet both the provider and activity requirements.

Service NSW will assess your application and if you meet the criteria you will receive notification from the Creative Kids team.

If you are not approved, you will receive advice indicating why the application has not been accepted.

If your application is deemed ineligible and you do not believe that this assessment is accurate or you have additional evidence which you believe demonstrates your ability to satisfy the eligibility criteria, you may submit a request for review.

A request for review should be submitted via info@service.nsw.gov.au and addressed to the Director, Creative Kids Program, Middle Office.

I provide an activity program within a school. Am I eligible to be a Creative Kids provider?

School-run activities, competitions and creative pursuits that are in school and part of the curriculum are not part of this program.

School excursions and incursions that are part of the curriculum are also ineligible.

Activities that are organised via a school or at a school but are out of hours or additional activities to school curriculum may be considered where the school is not the provider. 

Organisers need to check with the Creative Kids team at Service NSW to discuss specific circumstances.

Some of the children who attend my classes or activities do not live in NSW. Can they get a Creative Kids voucher?

It is a requirement of the program that the child must be a resident of NSW to be eligible for a voucher.

What types of activities are excluded from the program?

Ineligible activities are:

  • mobile app subscriptions

  • after-school care services with no structured creative arts program

  • membership fees that do not include a structured creative arts program

  • activities that are part of the school curriculum

  • school excursions and incursions

  • school run competitions, concerts, drama programs, including weekend activities or interschool competitions or activities.

Ineligible activity categories are:

  • cookery Classes
  • games and gaming (board games, chess, digital games)
  • gardening
  • gymnastics
  • aerobic dance
  • martial arts
  • pole dancing
  • physical culture
  • tutoring to school curriculum
  • yoga.

Note: Ineligible activities will be regularly reviewed.

Ineligible costs are:

  • individual items such as clothing, uniforms, instruments, creative supplies (paints, books, canvas) or other equipment that would usually be purchased from a retailer and paid for by the individual as part of participating in the activity. Note: packages where these items are included within the course are eligible.
  • examination fees for qualifications and assessment
  • travel costs to and from activities.

I am an approved Provider and applied under the previous Guidelines, is my Program still eligible?

Programs that were submitted prior to 3 February 2020 and met the Creative Kids eligibility requirements under previous guidelines will continue to be eligible.

If you are you changing or updating your program or adding new classes/workshops/lessons you should add these new programs to your Creative Kids Account by logging into your Creative Kids Dashboard and selecting “Add New Program”.

All programs submitted after 3 February 2020 should meet the new Guidelines Requirements.

I was previously rejected but think I might be eligible under the new Guidelines, can I reapply?

Yes. To reapply please contact creativekids@create.nsw.gov.au.

My organisation is in a border town. Can we claim vouchers and which kids are eligible for a voucher?

You must be an approved Creative Kids Provider to accept vouchers, A business should have a physical presence in NSW.

An organisation located in NSW is eligible to register. However, if it has children registered who live in another state or territory, those children will not be eligible to claim a voucher. Children must reside in NSW to be eligible for a voucher.

Registration

How do I become a Creative Kids provider?

You can Register as a Creative Kids provider online.

Check the Creative Kids program: Provider guidelines – PDF to find out if your organisation is eligible. 

What information is required to register as a provider?

You'll need a MyServiceNSW Account and when you register you'll be prompted to create a Service NSW business profile. You must be authorised to act on behalf of the organisation and be one of the following:

  • Associate (partner, director, sole trader, public officer, etc) as listed on the Australian Business Register (ABR).
  • Officeholder (director, secretary) as registered with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.
  • Other person with authority of any of the above to carry out functions on behalf of a business/entity.

To create a business profile, you'll need:

  • a personal identity document, such as Australian driver licence or passport
  • your organisation’s Australian Business Number (ABN) and contact details stored with the Australian Business Register for your ABN. 
    Important:  Your identity document name details must match the name details held with the Australian Business Register for your ABN.

Once your business profile is activated, you'll need to enter further details for registration as a Creative Kids provider, including:

  • organisation entity details
  • activities offered
  • location where are activities are offered
  • dates and times
  • a short description that explains your program offering
  • a PDF copy of your program structure that describes eligible activities, what is offered and what the learning outcomes are
  • a PDF copy of associated fees for the eligible activities plus a separate short description to explain this
  • qualifications of you and your staff to run the program offered
  • Certificate of Currency insurance (in PDF format). You can obtain a copy of this document from your insurer. It needs to:

    • Include a minimum public liability cover of $10 million for low risk activities and $20 million for high-risk activities

    • List the activity/activities you are covered for i.e music lessons, dance, craft workshops.

      Examples of high-risk activities include those which are water based, have physical contact, are dangerous, extreme (e.g. circus arts) or require specialised safety equipment.

  • copies of Certificates of Currency for insurance and indemnity cover
  • business bank account details for the account that will take reimbursements
  • declarations including Working With Children Check (WWCC) clearance
  • confirmation that you have completed the Child Safety eLearning module run by Office of the Children's Guardian 
  • acceptance of Terms and Conditions.

Service NSW may request additional information as part of the registration process after the initial submission. 

How long does it take for my application to be assessed once submitted?

Applications can take up to 28 days for Service NSW to assess and let you know if you are approved or not.

My Working With Children Check failed but I know I have a valid number. What should I do? 

There are multiple reasons why your Working With Children Check has failed. You can check your Working With Children Check status or contact the Office of the Children's Guardian.

Redeeming vouchers

How long are vouchers valid?

Vouchers are valid for redemption during the current calendar year of the activity program (that is, 1 January to 31 December).

Vouchers expire at the end of the calendar year.

Vouchers cannot be redeemed retrospectively.

Vouchers are available for redemption once only for the nominated registered season or term of activity.

When can I start redeeming vouchers?

Once you are approved as a Creative Kids provider, you can accept and redeem vouchers.

How do I check if a child is eligible and has a valid voucher?

Eligible recipients will be able to apply for a voucher through Service NSW.

Providers are able to check validity of vouchers by viewing the ‘Redeem Voucher’ tab on their Creative Kids dashboard. A voucher is used or consumed once it is validated.

Invalid vouchers will not be redeemable.

Reimbursements

How long will it take to be paid for the vouchers I've redeemed?

Reimbursements will be made within 7 days of the provider redeeming the voucher online, if vouchers are valid and banking details verified.

Providers will be reimbursed the actual value of the activity up to the value of $100 and will not automatically receive $100 for each voucher.

No retrospective reimbursements will be made, but organisations may allow for part or deferred payment at the time of registration.

How do I claim a reimbursement?

You'll be able to lodge your voucher reimbursement request online via your MyServiceNSW Account.

Already a provider

There are some activities that are eligible to be providers in both the Active Kids and Creative Kids programs. Providers must register for both programs as they run separately.

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