Families in Vernon will have access to 206 new licensed child care spaces in two new facilities by Fall 2022, thanks to $7 Million in grant funding from the Province of British Columbia and the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM).
“We are thrilled about this news, knowing what a positive impact more child care spaces will make on our community as a whole,” said Mayor Victor Cumming. “By providing and improving local childcare options, we will be able to offer more parents much needed support to participate in the workforce, advance their careers, operate businesses, provide professional services, or attend school or training.”
The City of Vernon will receive $6 million from the ChildCare BC New Spaces Fund from the Ministry of Children and Family Development, plus an additional $1 million from the UBCM Community Child Care Space Creation Program.
The City of Vernon is partnering with the Okanagan Boys and Girls Club to be the operator of the new facilities, which are expected to open in Fall 2022.
“We have a long history in Vernon of offering programs to children of all ages out of our Vernon Club and we couldn’t be happier about the chance to expand and upgrade our current programming in order to increase spaces at our Club,” said Jeremy Welder, Director of Operations with Boys and Girls Clubs. “These funds from the Province will create essential child care spaces that are needed throughout the community.”
One of the new facilities will be built on a vacant lot on Cummins Road, adjacent to Lakers Clubhouse. The facility will have capacity for 36 space for children under three and 50 for children aged 30 months to school aged.
The second facility will be developed on the Vernon Recreation Complex grounds. The ChildCare BC New Spaces Fund will provide 96 group child care (30 Months to School Age) spaces on this site. Additionally, 24 Group Child Care (under 36 months) spaces will be available thanks to funding from the UBCM Community Child Care Space Creation program.
“We are grateful for the investment the Province and UBCM are making in our community,” said Shayne Wright, Manager, Recreation Programs. “With this funding, we can now take a major step forward our plan to increase child care availability for all children aged 0-12 in the next five years.”