Funding for 24 new licensed child-care spaces that will serve families in Wells has been approved to proceed, thanks to funding through the provincial government’s B.C. Early Years Strategy.
The provincial government is providing the Wells and Area Community Association with $21,794 in capital funding to renovate their Huckleberry Daycare at Wells-Barkerville Elementary School, adding 24 multi-age spaces.
“Child care is not only a crucial part of early childhood development, but it also means that parents can pursue career, education and training opportunities, knowing their children are safe, happy and well-cared for,” said Coralee Oakes, MLA for Cariboo North. “As part of our government’s commitment under the B.C. Early Years Strategy, this newly renovated space will be an important part of the community of Wells and will provide enhanced quality care for families.”
These 24 new licensed child-care spaces are part of the provincial government’s commitment to support the creation of more than 1,000 new spaces by March 2015.
This investment marks the first phase of the provincial government’s Child-Care Major Capital Funding roll out, and will allow child-care providers to:
- Build a new child care facility, including the cost of buying land or a building.
- Assemble a modular building and develop a site.
- Renovate an existing building.
- Buy eligible equipment (including playground equipment) and furnishings to support new child-care spaces in an existing facility.
The provincial government is now in the process of working with the child-care providers to sign project agreements that include the specific requirements that providers have identified for each site, such as the need to lease or buy property, obtain local zoning permits and hire contractors to renovate the sites.
Construction and renovations for the new spaces are expected to begin by March 2015.
In addition to these 1,000 new spaces, the provincial government aims to support the creation of a further 1,000 spaces by March 2016 under its B.C. Early Years Strategy. This builds on the approximately 107,000 spaces that government currently supports throughout the province.
Applications for the next phase of child care major capital funding will start early in 2015. Interested child care providers can visit www.mcf.gov.bc.ca/childcare/major_capital.htm for more info.