Saanich will apply for $150,000 on behalf of six communities to help assess gaps in the supply of local daycare spaces. (Black Press file photo)

Saanich will apply for $150,000 on behalf of six communities to help assess gaps in the supply of local daycare spaces. (Black Press file photo)

Saanich leads six Greater Victoria communities in daycare funding application

Application is for $150,000 in provincial funding

Saanich is among six communities that have applied for funding to improve daycare.

The municipality has partnered up with the Highlands, Oak Bay, Central Saanich, North Saanich and Sidney to apply for $150,000 in provincial funds towards surveying gaps in available daycare space. Saanich itself is spearheading the application on behalf of the other communities, whose respective councils must also sign off.

RELATED: Saanich, Oak Bay seek to expand supply of daycare

If approved, funding for the analysis comes from a grant program that the Union of British Columbia Municipalities administers. The program, worth $3 million dollars, grants up to $25,000 to communities interested in creating new child care spaces over the next 10 years to help fill local gaps in child care services. Municipal officials heard last month that their respective communities can file joint applications.

RELATED: Saanich daycare closing after 40 years

“Following the gap analysis and workshops, we anticipate enabling non-profits and other groups to make individuals applications for capital grants of up to [$1 million] each,” said Haynes in a report to council.

Such funding would come from a second grant valued at $13.7 million.

Haynes reiterated Monday that the municipality itself is not interested in creating additional daycare spaces.

Other communities in the region are also pursuing funding, including Victoria and West Shore municipalities, said Haynes, who has promised to help improve the supply of affordable daycare. Haynes said earlier that the chronic shortage of daycare creates “significant problems” for young families in Saanich and surrounding municipalities.

“This is impacting the quality of life, family budgets and the economy of our municipality,” he said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com