With summer break drawing to a close, some working parents and caregivers will be searching for after-school or full-time childcare beginning in September.
And many of those caregivers will be calling around to various facilities only to be told they don’t have any space available for their child, which can be frustrating.
In an attempt to alleviate some of that frustration, the government is reminding parents and caregivers that there is an online interactive map available through the Ministry of Children and Family Development website that can, as the ministry says, “take the guesswork out of searching.”
The map has tags for over 4,500 licensed child-care facilities across the province, including over 30 in the Campbell River area, where those looking for care can see, at a glance, whether a facility has spaces available – and for which ages of children – what programs and services they offer and even get access to past health inspection reports for those facilities to ensure they are somewhere they will be comfortable leaving their child.
Spaces are filling quickly, however, especially in the elementary-school age categories. As of Aug. 24, the Mirror only found three childcare facilities on the Campbell River map with the word “yes” in the “Availability” section beside the age category “Grade 1 to Age 12.”
Other child care tools are also available through various ministry websites, including a guide for selecting and monitoring child care to help parents and caregivers decide what kind of child-care arrangements best suit their needs, put out by the Ministry of Health.
This guide (PDF) outlines the differences between licensed and unlicensed daycares, the factors to consider when choosing a facility or provider, tips on making your child’s transition to child care successful and how best to monitor a provider’s performance. There is also a section in the guide about different forms of financial support available for those who need it.
Speaking of financial support, here’s the government page that outlines the eligibility requirements and applications for provincial childcare subsidies.