A new campus-based child care centre at Selkirk College will provide 24 much needed spaces for children, allowing parents attending the college to focus on their school work.
The college is receiving almost $1.2 million through the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund and $300,000 through the Columbia Basin Trust to build the Silver King Childcare Centre. The centre will have 16 spaces for infants and toddlers and eight spaces for children up to the age of 12.
“For the first time, parents at Selkirk College Silver King Campus in Nelson will have quality, licensed child care available on campus,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Children and Family Development. “As a former early childhood educator and instructor at Selkirk College, I know how needed these spaces are and the difference they will make in the lives of children,
students and staff.”
The centre will be run in partnership with Kootenay Kids Society, a non-profit that delivers community social services in the West Kootenay and Boundary regions. The centre will offer quality child care to young children in a safe and engaging setting. All children, including those with extra support needs, will be able to actively participate in this child-centred environment.
“Access to post-secondary programs for learners of all backgrounds is the foundation of Selkirk College,” said Angus Graeme, president, Selkirk College. “Parents with young kids are an important part of the mix on all our campuses and this new centre in Nelson will help us provide students with children the ability to get the education and training required for a
stronger future. Having child care on campus available to our students will help change lives for both the parents and their little ones.”
Families at the centre will have access to all the services provided by Kootenay Kids Society. This includes a wide range of social and educational programming for expectant and new parents, access to the toy lending library and resources, Indigenous programming, family cultural events, early intervention support services and in-home visits to provide additional
care to new parents.
“This new facility is a welcome addition to meeting child care needs in Nelson and on campus, adding to the 412 spaces the Trust has already created in the Basin since launching the Child Care Support Program in 2017,” said Johnny Strilaeff, President and CEO of Columbia Basin Trust. “We’re so pleased to have been part of this project from the beginning, so it’s exciting to see it moving forward. Congratulations to all the partners for all the hard work to make it happen.”
“Kootenay Kids Society is extremely pleased to partner with Selkirk College and Columbia Basin Trust to bring additional child care spaces to Nelson. Locating the child care centre at the college will reduce educational barriers for the students who are parents,” said Helen Lutz, Executive Director for Kootenay Kids Society. “We also look forward to hosting early childhood education students from Selkirk College who will complete their education and practicums prior to becoming early childhood educators. It really is a win-win for so many families in the community.”
Along with helping to support the creation of new spaces, the Trust has also helped Basin child care providers purchase equipment or upgrade facilities to improve 2,977 existing spaces as well as provide support to help train 116 early childhood educators. Learn more about what the Trust is doing to support child care in the region.