Maple Ridge-Mission MLA Bob D’Eith was in Mission Monday morning for the official start of a new, innovative child care investment for the Heritage Park Childcare Centre in Mission.
A total of 37 spaces have fees capped at $200 per month or eliminated altogether.
The initiative is part of a B.C. government pilot project that is delivering $10-a-day (or less) child care to parents. Child care providers participating in the pilot receive government funding to cover their operational and administrative costs, and in return, fees are eliminated or capped at a maximum of $200 per month.
D’Eith was at the centre on March 11 along with representatives from Mission council, to officially launch the prototype program.
“For far too long parents haven’t been able to access affordable, high-quality child care,” said D’Eith. “This is an exciting next step towards universal child care right across the province,” said D’Eith.
“Right here in Mission, no one will pay more than $200 per month per child (at the Heritage Park Centre). Because for a long time, parents have had a really hard time with affordability.”
Heritage Park is one of the 53 organizations across the province that are participating in the pilot project.
“The prototype sites are important because what it’s going to do is it’s going to help us establish the whole idea of universal childcare in B.C.,” said D’Eith, adding it will take a lot of work.
He said the initial sites are important in order to get the bugs out and make sure it works well for parents.
Mission Mayor Pam Alexis said she is excited about the announcement adding “it’s a perfect fit for this particular childcare facility.”
“Mission has a large percentage of families and accessing an adequate number of affordable daycare spots, as we are a community of commuters, has been a challenge for our families. We are also growing at an unprecedented rate and with that will come the need for new affordable daycare spots, we’re hoping to expand,” said Alexis.
Lorraine Trulsen director of the Heritage Park Childcare Centre said when the program opportunity came around, she was “all over it.” She knew it was something the centre had to be a part of.
“When we got the news that we got this program, we were absolutely thrilled and we were thrilled for our families. We do see families struggle all the time,” she added.
Heritage Park Childcare Centre is part of Mission Daycare Society, one of the only non-profit childcare facilities in Mission. Mission Daycare Society has many years of experience providing care to children with extra support needs in the community.