More parents in the Kootenays will see dramatic savings as seven child care sites are welcomed into the $10 a Day child care program.
At these sites, families will pay no more than $200 per month per child for full-time enrolment during regular business hours.
“Affordable child care spaces can change families’ lives for the better, and I’m excited to see this being expanded in the Kootenays,” said Brittny Anderson, MLA for Nelson-Creston. “By reducing the cost to $10 a day for parents, they no longer have to choose between child care and work. This frees them up to pursue their education or career, all while knowing their kids are getting a good start on their educational journey.”
In Budget 2021, the Province committed to expanding the number of $10 a Day spaces in B.C. by converting 3,750 licensed child care spaces into low-cost spaces for families. The 246 new $10 a Day spaces in the Kootenays are part of this commitment.
“I know there couldn’t be a better time for families to hear that their child care centre is becoming a $10 a Day site,” said Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care. “We’ve heard from families that having access to $10 a Day child care is life changing, and when our ChildCareBC plan is fully implemented, no family will pay more than $10 a day for licensed child care. As we work toward that goal, tens of thousands of parents are already benefiting by saving as much as $1,600 a month on child care. Through Budget 2022, more savings are on the way for all types of child care.”
This expansion increases the number of $10 a Day ChildCareBC spaces available for families from 2,500 when the program began in 2018 to more than 6,500. By partnering with the Government of Canada through the Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, $10 a Day ChildCareBC spaces will more than double again to 12,500 by December 2022.
“Becoming a $10 a Day ChildCareBC site has been a game-changer for us and our families. Knowing that the most you will have to pay for child care is $200 per month makes a difference in all households,” said Carrie Rickards, general manager, Eva Joseph Learning and Cultural Society. “Parents don’t have to make the difficult choice of either going back to work or staying home because their whole paycheque is being eaten up by child care costs. As for our centre, it is comforting to know that the money we have budgeted will be coming at the beginning of each month, and with our monthly administration work being made easier, I am able to focus more time on the children.”
In addition to $10 a Day child care investments, Budget 2022 builds on existing provincial funding that helps tens of thousands of families continue paying less for child care, who are saving as much as $1,600 per month per child through provincial investments such as the Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative and the Affordable Child Care Benefit. Already 93% of eligible licensed child care providers have enrolled in the fee-reduction initiative, saving families as much as $350 per month per child.
“We have always considered our family fortunate to be part of the Little Badgers community because the quality of teaching and learning has supported our children to develop great assets as they learn to explore their world,” said Kaitlyn, parent of a child at Little Badgers Early Learning Program. “The $10 a Day child care has offered our family a reduction in stress with a better focus on work-life balance. We are able to support our family, our community and reinvest our savings in our children’s development and future.”
With new federal investments, the average rate of child care will be reduced by 50% from 2019 levels for children five and younger by the end of this year.
- Since 2018, the Kootenays have opened 10 $10 a Day ChildCareBC sites, offering a total of 369 spaces.
- Since 2018, the Province has invested over $80 million to provide affordable, quality and inclusive child care in the Kootenays, including more than $43 million in direct savings to parents.
- So far in 2021-22, fee reductions have been approved for more than 68,600 child care spaces at more than 3,600 child care facilities in B.C. through the Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative.
- An average of 29,700 child care spaces receive support through the Affordable Child Care Benefit every month. Parents making less than $45,000 can receive 100% funding and those making as much as $111,000 can receive partial funding.
For more information on the $10 a Day ChildCareBC sites, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/childcare10aDaysites
A backgrounder follows.