The YMCA of Northern BC is jumping for joy after the NDP announced 22,000 additional child care spaces in the province during Tuesday’s budget in Victoria.
While it’s not known how many spaces will be coming to Northern BC yet, CEO Amanda Alexander says the one billion dollar investment is a great place to start.
“From an early learning perspective, that’s a fantastic outcome as early learning is key in terms of the building blocks to children’s success and being able to retain families who work and stay in northern communities.”
“We really hope too that there will be an investment in supporting our early childcare educators as well as having quality, qualified folks to be able to run these important programs is a really important part of our sustainability.”
The limited amount of spaces in Prince George and Northern BC came to a head recently when parents bent over backward to secure one of the 81 spots at their Lac Des Bois Facility in Prince George.
“We had folks who slept overnight to ensure that they would be able to get a space for their infant and toddlers and that’s really significant because it speaks volumes on how desperate people are to find quality care,” added Alexander.
She adds it’s nice to see the momentum shift when it comes to funding as it wasn’t that long ago childcare was at the other end of the spectrum.
“The dollars haven’t been sufficient and I’m glad to see the momentum continuing to increase to address the needs as we move forward and certainly we’ve seen some good quality analysis around the more that needs to be done to meet this need.”
The YMCA has locations in Prince George, Vanderhoof, and Fort St. James.