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Know Your Rights: Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance

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Q. I am currently on Jobseekers Allowance. Is there a payment to help with the costs of children going to school?

A. The Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BTSCFA) helps you meet the cost of uniforms and footwear for children going to school. Your child must be aged between 4-17 on September 30. If they are aged between 18-22, they must be returning to full-time second-level education in a recognised school or college in the autumn of the year you are applying.

Q. How do I qualify to claim the BTSCFA?

A. To qualify, you must be getting a Social Welfare payment or taking part in a training, employment or adult education scheme. In general, you must be getting an Increase for a Qualified Child with your payment. People getting the Working Family Payment and the Back to Work Family Dividend can qualify for BTSCFA. Also, your total family income must be below a certain level for your family size as laid out in the table below:

Weekly income limits for 2022

Number of children income limit:

1 child €620
2 children €668
3 children €716
4 children €764*

*The income limit is increased by €48 for each additional dependent child.

Q. What is the BTSCFA rate this year?

A. In 2022, the allowance paid for each eligible child aged 4-11 on September 30, 2022 is €160.The allowance paid for each eligible child aged 12-22 on September 30 is €285. Children aged between 18 and 22 years must be returning to full-time second-level education in a recognised school or college in the autumn of 2022.

Q. When can you apply for the BTSCFA?

A. The BTSCFA scheme is open for applications from June 20 until September 30 next.

Q. I am living and working in Ireland but my child is living in another EU country. Can I claim BTSCFA?

A. No. You cannot claim BTSCFA for a child who is not resident in the State.

Q. I have applied for a qualifying Social Welfare payment but haven't got a decision. Can I apply for the BTSCFA?

A. If you have applied for a Social Welfare payment, or have appealed a decision not to award you a Social Welfare payment and are waiting for a decision on your application, you should apply for the BTSCFA before the scheme closes. Your entitlement to the BTSCFA will be decided when you get a decision on your application or appeal.

Q. How do I apply for the BTSCFA?

A. The Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection pays the BTSCFA automatically to many families. If you are paid automatically, you don’t have to apply for the BTSCFA. You will get a letter before June 20 to let you know that you will be paid automatically. The BTSCFA automatic payments will be paid the week beginning July 13.

If you did not get a letter confirming your payment automatically by June 20, you can apply for the BTSCFA online on www.MyWelfare.ie. You must have a Public Services Card and a verified MyGovID account to apply online.The closing date for applications is September 30.

If you need further information about any of the issues raised here or you have other questions, you can call a member of the local Citizens Information Service in Kerry on 0818 07 7860 Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. They will be happy to assist you and if necessary arrange an appointment for you.

Alternatively you can email on tralee@citinfo.ie or log on to www.citizensinformation.ie.

The National Phone Service is available on 0818 07 4000 Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm.

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Sam Maguire to feature at next week’s AugustFest

Killarney Racecourse is set to host the exciting three-day summer horse-racing festival from Thursday August 18 to Saturday 20 inclusive. The festival also marks 200 years of racing at Killarney Races […]

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Killarney Racecourse is set to host the exciting three-day summer horse-racing festival from Thursday August 18 to Saturday 20 inclusive. The festival also marks 200 years of racing at Killarney Races offering patrons great racing, history, socialising, entertainment and so much more at Ireland’s most scenic racecourse.

With lots of ticket levels and packages including food and beverage options to choose from, whether it is close to the action general admission tickets or silver service fine dining, there is something for everyone at Killarney Races. Live music, fashion, and fun for all the family complement the best of summer racing at the track this August.

Thursday and Friday are evening meetings and Saturday is an afternoon event with all race cards offering seven thrilling races for spectators to enjoy each day.

Thursday is Sam Maguire evening. And to mark Kerry’s recent success and Killarney Races bi-centenary celebration, Killarney Races are offering an amazing deal on the opening day of their three-day event. On Thursday August 18 patrons will enjoy admission, a racecard and a €5 free bet all for €20! The first race is approximately 5pm with gates open from 3pm. Come early, bring along your jersey and camera, it’s going to be a great evening.

Friday will see the new entrance officially open, as racing officials and elected representatives unlock the gate to the next 200 years at the popular Killarney track, first race at approximately 5pm with gates open from 3pm. With music on the lawn from Donal Lucey and from Tom Cats in the Jim Culloty bar after racing the après racing party is sure to be a ‘winner alright’!

Saturday is AYU Ladies Day and all about the glamour as fashionistas bring the curtain down on AugustFest in fine style. AYU is an Irish based and Irish owned cosmetics company set up by renowned make-up artist Suzie O’Neill. With over €1,500 in prizes for the most stylish ladies to dress up for, what’s not to love! Gates open from 12 noon with the first off at approximately 2pm.

“At AugustFest we will be celebrating a major milestone here at Killarney Races, 200 years of racing in Killarney which is amazing,” Killarney Racecourse Chairman, Gerard Coughlan said.

“I would like to take this opportunity to encourage all locals and visitors to Killarney to come along and be part of the 200 year celebrations and share in this historic moment with us as we officially open the gates on the next 200 years! It’s a rare opportunity to be able to say ‘I was there the day they celebrated the bi-centenary’ anywhere and what a great story to share with the grandchildren in years to come. On that note, we are looking forward to welcoming multiple generations of families during AugustFest, so make a plan and come along and join us for what will be a most remarkable festival at our beautiful boutique racecourse this August!”

The feature race on the opening day of AugustFest is the Vincent O’Brien Ruby Stakes (listed), the Kingdom Gold Cup Handicap of €50,000 and the Gain Advantage Race Series. On Friday, the day two feature is the Grade B Handicap Hurdle of €50,000 and the EBF Novice Hurdle, with four competitive chase races. The final day of the festival the feature is the Grade B Handicap Chase of €50,000.

Adult tickets are available from €20 and children under 14 go free ensuring a great day out for all the family. For those who love a deal, the “Punter’s Pack” is a great value-added option and if you want to live it up check out the Maurice O’Donoghue Suite and Panoramic Restaurant options.

For all ticket details and festival programme information visit killarneyraces.com.

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Jessie Buckley’s album shortlisted for prestigious award

Killarney superstar Jessie Buckley has been shortlisted for the 2022 Mercury Prize Album of the Year. Her collaboration with Bernard Butler ‘For All Our Days That Tear the Heart’ is […]

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Killarney superstar Jessie Buckley has been shortlisted for the 2022 Mercury Prize Album of the Year.

Her collaboration with Bernard Butler ‘For All Our Days That Tear the Heart’ is one of 12 albums shortlisted for the prestigious award which will be revealed in London on September 8.

“Neither of us really knew each other and it was actually a blessing in disguise because we met each other in the moment and trusted each other, took a leap of faith and in a way come in just the way we were and not because of who we are,” she told a press conference at the awards announcement in London last week.

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