Coram joining childcare debates at October party conferences

  • 28 September 2023

Coram will be joining the debate around one of the UK’s biggest policy challenges – delivering high-quality, affordable childcare for all children and families – in events taking place at this year’s Conservative and Labour Party annual conferences in October.

Next Tuesday (3rd October), at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester, Ellen Broome, managing director of CFC, will be taking part in a Nesta-sponsored event, “Building an early years workforce for the future,” alongside the newly appointed children’s minister David Johnston MP. Ellen will be addressing the current strengths and challenges relevant to building the childcare workforce the UK needs to meet the needs of children and families. This event will be livestreamed on both YouTube and LinkedIn.

The following week on Monday 9th October, Coram will be at the Labour Party conference in Liverpool, and leading the “Childcare: a missed opportunity to narrow the gap” event. Our CEO Dr Carol Homden will set the scene, before speakers including head of CFC Megan Jarvie, shadow children’s minister Helen Hayes, and Joseph Rowntree Foundation principal policy adviser Abby Jitendra set out the reforms needed to ensure childcare is meeting the needs of children and families.

The annual childcare and holiday childcare surveys published by Coram Family and Childcare, setting out cost and availability of childcare nationwide, have become key references informing government and policy makers, and the events represent an excellent opportunity to advance dialogue with politicians and shape future policy up to and beyond the next general election. Follow-up reports and copies of speeches will be made available on the StaffHub following the events.

The full line-ups are as follows:

Conservative Party conference, Tuesday 3 October, 13.00-14.30hrs

“Building an Early Years workforce for the future”

Chair – Ravi Gurumurthy, Chief Executive Officer, Nesta


  • Ellen Broomé, Acting Managing Director, Coram Family and Childcare – What are strengths and challenges in the workforce in the UK?
  • David Johnston MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children, Families and Wellbeing
  • Carl Cullinane, Director of Research and Policy, The Sutton Trust – What can we learn from international examples?
  • Councillor Mark Sutton – Chelmsford City Council – What can we learn from local responses?
  • Siohan Baillie MP for Stroud, What should Government do now to build strengths and meet challenges?

Labour Party conference, Monday 9th October, 14.00-15.00 hrs

“Childcare: a missed opportunity to narrow the gap?”

Chair – Dr Carol Homden, CEO, Coram Croup


  • Megan Jarvie, Head, Coram Family and Childcare – What are the building blocks for a childcare system that achieves its potential?
  • Abby Jitendra, Principal Policy Adviser, Joseph Rowntree Foundation – How does the childcare market need to change?
  • Helen Hayes, Shadow Minister (Education) – How would Labour reform childcare to meet children and families’ needs?

For more information please contact Dominique Fourniol, Coram Group Head of Communications, 877413.