Parents and children who attend the UVic Child Care Services, a program that was under threat but has been marked for $500,000 in provincial funding. Black Press file photo

UVic, Arbutus add combined 92 child care spots

Province’s announcement brings relief to child care crunch

Relief is on the way for the child care crunch in Gordon Head and Queenswood area of Saanich.

The previously threatened child care program at the University of Victoria is getting $500,000 from the province to build a new facility and will increase its numbers by 32 to 116 for next year.

“The funding will allow us to transform Child Care Complex B into two new child care centres, creating 32 new spaces for preschool aged children of UVic students, faculty and staff families,” said Jim Forbes, director of campus services at UVic.

The announcement came Monday that the province is adding 251 new licensed child-care spaces in Greater Victoria, 172 of which are in Saanich, a $2.7 million investment from the province’s Child Care Major Capital Funding Program. It’s part of a $33-million plan to create more than 3,800 child-care spaces in B.C. More than half of the planned 3,800 new spaces in B.C. are at non-profit run centres and a fifth are at Indigenous child-care providers.

Locally, the funding of $174,381 will add 20 preschool places at the Cloverdale Child Care Society, $387,000 to add 60 spaces at Arbutus Grove Nature Program and Out of School Care, $219,137 to add 20 spaces at Kids Klub Torquay, $218,937 for 20 spaces at Kids Klub Northridge, $200,957 for 20 spaces at Kids Klub Braefoot, $12,400 for 12 spaces at the Curious Kids Infant and Toddler Centre, $250,000 to add 15 spaces at the Victoria Montessori Childcare Centre, $388,548 for 24 spaces at the James Bay Infant Plus Daycare Centre and $371,173 for 28 new spaces at the Phoenix Child Care Centre with the Victoria Immigrant and Refugee Centre Society.

It’s a big addition for Arbutus Grove Children’s Centre, of which 48 of the new spots are out-of-school-care spots for Frank Hobbs elementary students (kindergarten to Grade 5) and 12 are for new nature preschool spots for children three to five.

“It’s 60 new child care spaces that we’re excited about,” said director Lynn Young.

To make room Arbutus is building a new space on Frank Hobbs SD61 land.

Meanwhile construction already started at UVic’s Child Care Complex B in October. The renovations will transform the current large, open, interior space of the 1993-built Complex B into two new child care centres with a shared kitchen and separate exterior entrances.

Around B.C. the province is in the process of working with child-care providers to sign project agreements that include the specific requirements identified for each site, such as property needs (for lease or purchase), local zoning permits and the hiring of contractors to renovate the sites.

“These 251 new spaces are just a start, and we know there’s more work to do,” said Lana Popham, MLA for Saanich South.

The new child-care spaces are part of the B.C. government’s long-term goal of implementing universal child care in B.C.

reporter@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria seniors want to know more about marijuana

Four presentations on the medical properties of cannabis for seniors come to Victoria

Rickter Scale: California Dreaming with Steve Shutt

The Rickter Scale is a weekly column in the Goldstream News Gazette

Victoria gears up to axe free parking on Sundays

Council vote puts Sunday parking fees towards bus passes for youth

Oak Bay one step closer to deer immunocontraceptive test

Up to 80 deer could be given ‘birth control’ vaccine in the fall

Black Press readers share photos of their favourite critters on #LoveYourPetDay

Greater Victoria is raining cats and dogs…and snails and goats

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Ontario man accused of killing 11-year-old daughter dies in hospital, police say

Roopesh Rajkumar had been hospitalized with what police described as a self-inflicted gunshot wound

Manitoba ‘pauses’ link with ex-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell after allegations

Campbell had been hired to review two major hydro projects

Nanaimo edges Royal Bay by one point to win Vancouver Island AAA girls basketball title

Nanaimo District Secondary School wins first AAA girls’ Island title in 29 years

City of Port Alberni cancels tourist train operations for 2019

Steam train to McLean Mill is out of commission for repairs; city wants to re-examine rail costs

Heritage minute features Japanese-Canadian baseball team, internment

The Vancouver Asahi baseball team won various championships across the Pacific Northwest

UPDATE: Woman, off-duty cop in critical condition after stabbing outside B.C. elementary school

The officer was interceding in an alleged assault when he and the woman were stabbed

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

Most Read