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How can a parent get help with the expense of a child?

I'm not sure how I, as a single parent, am going to be able to cope when the child is born.

I am Irish and from Dublin.

17

It can seem very overwhelming, but with help from public services and by adjusting your expectations about having the new fancy gadgets that are on the "must have" lists, you can definitely budget for baby.

First, find out about public services available for free

Second, adjust your expectations: babies don't have to be as expensive as you think.

  • At first, newborns just need some clothes and a place to sleep. The connection with mom is more important than any thing you could buy for them
  • Babies only use clothes for a short amount of time (~3 months) before they grow out of them, so don't invest in new clothes, especially fancy new clothes
  • Find your local second-hand store

  • Get in touch with a mum's group on facebook. They often have a board where mums post photos gently-used things to give away or sell - especially gear, like baby monitors, changing tables etc.

  • Plan to breastfeed if you can, to avoid paying for formula (and as a bonus, it's good for your baby)

  • Buy cloth nappies, a one-time investment of 200 EUR (much less if you buy them used!) can have you set for the next two-three years, rather than buying 10 EUR of diapers each week

  • 6
    Second-hand stores and donations provide a huge savings. It's more research and legwork sometimes, but often very much worth the effort. – Acire May 8 '15 at 11:53
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    Are you sure the cloth diapers are a significant savings after you factor in the costs (water, detergent, electricity, or a cleaning service) of cleaning them? And time spent that will take away from other ways you could be saving money? – R.. May 8 '15 at 19:55
  • @R.. The cost ratio does work out for some people and is dependent on a lot of factors; the OP should carefully consider it, but it's a possibility. – Acire May 9 '15 at 10:30
12

Here's a summary of social welfare payments available to support families and specifically children, in Ireland.

The ones which sound as though they might be relevant to you are:

See also: Family Income Supplement.

Call the Citizens' Information Service on 0761 07 9000 for help in claiming. If you want to go into their office and talk to someone in person, there's a number of centres in the Dublin area you can visit.

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