A new child care facility will bring 81 new spaces to Lake Country in 2022. (YMCA photo)

Child care coming to Okanagan high school

81 new space facility expected to be completed by spring 2022

More options are coming to Lake Country families in need of child care.

Central Okanagan Public Schools, in partnership with the YMCA of Okanagan, has been awarded provincial funding to build a new child care centre in the district. The centre will be located on the grounds of George Elliot High School, offering 81 new child care spaces for families with children ages zero to 12 years old. Construction is planned for early 2021 with completion estimated for spring of 2022.

“We are happy to have been selected to offer this vital service,” board of education chairperson Moyra Baxter said. “A positive, nurturing child care environment lays the foundation for a child’s overall health and development, and ultimately the long-term health of our community. Working with the YMCA to provide more child care spaces in the area brings us one step closer to ensuring children enter our school system ready to learn and succeed.”

READ MORE: Thousands of child care spaces coming to 35 B.C. communities

This collaborative project will help ease the struggle of local families in need of care.

“The YMCA is grateful to once again work alongside Central Okanagan Public Schools and the Province of B.C. to deliver much needed child care services to families in the Okanagan,” YMCA Okanagan child care general manager Danielle Miranda said. “As Lake Country continues to grow, so does the demand for child care. We know families are struggling to find quality, affordable care in the area, and we couldn’t be happier to expand our services, offering our trusted, nurturing services to this community.”

With this new Lake Country project, along with a child care centre under construction on Dilworth Mountain and several other collaborative projects and services in the area, Central Okanagan Public Schools and the YMCA of Okanagan have a long history of partnership to provide vital services to the community. Other projects include YMCA Okanagan Swims, which provides every child in Grade 3 with vital water safety education, several out of school care programs located in Central Okanagan schools, as well as the Young Parents Program and Child Care at Kelowna Secondary School.

Both organizations believe families should have access to child care, regardless of their financial means. As a local charity, and thanks to generous community donors, the YMCA of Okanagan will be able to offer families of this centre, the option to access financial assistance, on top of government provided subsidies, if they cannot afford the full cost of care for their children.

You can learn more about the YMCA of Okanagan’s existing child care services and other community programs at ymcaokanagan.ca.

READ MORE: 556 child care spaces for Vernon area welcomed, Chamber says


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