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Posted: February 10, 2020

Changes to child care fund seek to maximize spaces

Due to the success of the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund, the provincial government is updating guidelines and sharing best practices with applicants to better support projects in communities with an acute need for new child care spaces.

Government has provided funding for more than 10,400 new spaces through its three space-creation initiatives – the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund, Start-Up Grants and neighbourhood learning centres – with thousands more to come.

Starting Feb. 10, 2020, the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund will accept applications through two application windows. The first of these will open Feb. 10 and end May 11. Successful applicants will be notified by August 2020. A second application window is scheduled to open in November 2020, ending Feb. 10, 2021.

This approach enables the province to compare applications over a set timeframe. This will allow funding to be targeted to organizations and communities best able to meet child care shortages in their areas and to prioritize applications that create child care spaces that will remain community assets for the long term, explained a Ministry of Children and Family Development media release.

As well, communities that have recently completed child care needs assessments will have more time to develop targeted applications based on what they have learned.

In addition, to ensure funding is being used for new licensed child care spaces in as many communities as possible, and based on best practices identified through the 15 months of the program, province will prioritize projects with a cost per space of $40,000 or less.

Applicants will be required to demonstrate:

  • the link between their proposed project and the need within their community;
  • reference to a community child care plan or needs assessment, such as those created through the Union of British Columbia Municipalities’ Community Child Care Planning Grant program; and
  • that any necessary professional, administrative and consulting services total no more than 15% of the total provincially funded project cost.

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