Parents in Coldstream and Lavington can expect to have access to more child care spaces before 2020 comes to a close.
A new Maven Lane child care centre is expected to open across from Lavington Elementary School in December, thanks to a $637,800 grant from Childcare BC’s New Spaces Fund,in partnership with the District of Coldstream.
Operated by the North Okanagan Child Care society, the centre will provide 32 child care spaces including 12 spaces for infants and toddlers, eight spaces for children age 3-5 and 12 spaces for children up to the age of 12.
“The new Maven Lane child care centre’s location near the local elementary school means parents who also have older children will have a one-stop drop-off and pickup location, making morning routines much easier,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Children and Family Development (MCFD).
“The result of a great partnership with the district, this new, accessible facility will also ensure that children of all abilities will be able to safely access the building and participate in the centre’s activities.”
Maven Lane will be equipped with wheelchair-accessible washrooms and outdoor play spaces. Staff will also have training in early childhood development and special needs to ensure all children can participate in activities, the MCFD said on Wednesday.
“We have heard from the community that there is a desperate need for additional child care spaces in Coldstream,” said Coldstream mayor Jim Garlick.
“The recent Child Care Needs Assessment Report showed a significant lack of available child care spaces in our area. We would like to thank the Province of British Columbia and the Ministry of Children and Family Development for providing these funds which will help to address the child care shortage in our community.”
Plans are also in place for parent participation, which will include field trips to local fire halls, police stations, museums, libraries, pet stores and beaches to build a sense of community.
The New Spaces Fund has approved an average of 700 child care spaces for funding each month since its inception in July 2018.