Better access to affordable, quality child care for Richmond families
BC, News, Politics
Thursday January 16, 2020
This backgrounder contains additional information on the four projects that are creating 225 new licensed child care spaces in Richmond.
Little Wings Day Care
Forty-eight new spaces are being created – 24 infant/toddler spaces and 24 for children aged three to five. Funding is helping the centre relocate after it unexpectedly lost its lease, and will support an expansion to accommodate an additional nine new spaces. Children will learn about and celebrate diversity through a focus on multiculturalism. The centre provides a morning and afternoon snack. Parents are encouraged to join events and volunteer opportunities at the centre, including field trips, fundraising and family-fun events.
“Little Wings Daycare has operated on Sea Island for nearly 30 years, but with growth and the evolution in the Lower Mainland, we needed to find a new home to operate in,” said Beth Henschel, board chair, Little Wings. “Funding from the Province has allowed us to build a new facility on Sea Island that not only offers continuity of care for our children, but more spaces for families in our community. We are grateful for this support from the Province, as well as the many other incredible organizations in our community that have come together to make our project possible. Little Wings looks forward to caring for kids in our community for another 30 years.”
River Run Early Care and Learning Centre
Sixty-one new spaces are being created – 12 infant/toddler spaces, 25 for children aged three to five years, and 24 for school-age children. The City of Richmond owns the building, with the Atira Women’s Resource Society to operate the facility. It will provide a daily lunch program, as well as access to health-care specialists, donated clothing and household goods for families who need them. The centre will also offer dedicated workshops and programming to support families who have experienced abuse. This includes supports for Indigenous women through an Elder in residence and Waaban Outreach Support to give them access to supports, including traditional learning, life-skills programs and resource information and referrals.
“River Run Early Care and Learning Centre is an example of how partnerships between local and provincial governments, developers and non-profit child care operators can benefit communities,” said Malcolm Brodie, mayor, City of Richmond. “With this project, the City of Richmond will provide an additional 81 licensed spaces to support the development of a comprehensive child care system for parents and children in Richmond. We are pleased that Atira Women’s Resource Society is taking on this important role as the appointed operator and that the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund will provide much needed support to enhance the quality and affordability of programs at the new centre when it opens in 2020.”
Sarah Louie, director, early years and family well-being, Atira Women’s Resource Society, said, “Atira Women’s Resource Society is committed to providing high quality, affordable child care. River Run Early Care and Learning Centre is located in a neighbourhood where child care is in high demand. The Childcare BC New Spaces Fund provides the essential furniture and equipment that will allow us to develop curriculum that provides inspired learning spaces that support the healthy physical, social and emotional development of children in our community.”
St. Dulwich Academy
Seventy-six new spaces are being created – 36 infant/toddler spaces and 40 for children aged three to five years. St. Dulwich Academy has partnered with the Aurora Education Group to provide resources and program materials for the centre, with staff able to speak Chinese and Korean. The centre will work with local organizations to provide extracurricular activities for the children, including music lessons, martial arts and dance. Children will also have access to a nutrition program, which offers meals and snacks to teach them healthy eating habits.
“The St. Dulwich Academy team is thrilled to see this project get off the ground of Richmond,” said Ivy Yang, executive director, St. Dulwich Academy. “We are grateful to the ministry for its support. We will have the ability to be the common ground that brings families in communities together. Our mission to provide holistic care shall benefit the members in our community, from children to families.”
These spaces are in addition to the below project, which was previously announced:
Kids & Company Richmond (announced December 2018)
Forty new spaces were created – 24 infant/toddler spaces and 16 spaces for children aged three to five. Funding is being used to expand an existing facility, taking the total number of spaces at the centre to 96. This has allowed Kids & Company to increase its community involvement and provide additional services, such as complimentary public events, educational seminars for parents and special programs for Indigenous families. The facility is accessible and includes exterior ramps and a barrier-free washroom for children who may have extra support needs.