Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes said the district is reaching out to other communities to leverage more funding to improve daycare in the region. (Black Press file photo)

Saanich looks to leverage more funding for daycare analysis

Daycare spaces could also become part of amenity contributions, says Mayor Fred Haynes

Saanich may team up with additional communities in Greater Victoria to improve daycare for children.

The public heard last month that Saanich and Oak Bay plan to file a joint application to a grant program from the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM). If approved, each community would receive $25,000 to help identify local gaps in daycare service.

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

But officials have since heard more than just the two communities may in interested in filling joint applications to the UBCM grant program worth $3 million.

“So I am reaching out to some other municipalities to see if we can get more into the group,” said Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes. “If that is the case, we will have more funding available.”

The funding itself would not create more spaces, but rather identify existing gaps.

As for actual new spaces, the provincial government has made $13.7 million available to create approximately 1,370 more spaces, and the City of Victoria has already signalled it would apply for funding.

Haynes said Saanich is not interested in making such an application. “But we would be very much wanting to have conversations with those groups in Saanich that are doing that.” Potential groups would include SD61 and SD63, as well as non-profits such as the Saanich Neighbourhood Place.

RELATED: Long-time director of Saanich Neighbourhood Place leaves behind legacy

RELATED: Saanich forks out $253,000 for non-profit daycare

Haynes said the issue of affordable daycare appears high on the agenda of many including employers whose employees are struggling with finding daycare.

“We do have a housing crisis, but we also actually have a childcare crisis,” he said. “It is very difficult for families to have children, and there is no daycare,” he said.

To help solve this crisis, Saanich has also been talking to developers, who could create spaces through their amenity contributions, he said, adding that daycare spaces in residential developments also ease transportation pressures, since parents would not have to travel back and forth, if they can drop their off children in the same place where they live.

Ultimately, the provision of daycare is a question of affordability. Anything that helps families with daycare costs leaves more money for other areas of life, he said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

District of Saanich

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Donated sculpture in Sidney’s Beacon Park a testament to perseverance

Victoria artist Armando Barbon picked up sculpting 22 years ago

Greater Victoria businesses come together to help Island kids

Langford Lowe’s raises funds for youth mental health all month

Sidney builds community resilience through neighbourhood gatherings

Meet Your Street needs residents to create gatherings, safe interactions

‘Each step is a prayer’: Ojibwe man will walk from Hope to Saanich for Indigenous healing, reconciliation

James Taylor departs Sept. 20, returns to Saanich in five days for sacred fire

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

POLL: Do you plan on allowing your children to go trick or treating this year?

This popular annual social time will look quite different this year due to COVID-19

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event in downtown Courtenay was part of wider event on Friday

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Most Read