In communities across the province, families and educators will be holding a ‘stroller brigade’ to make childcare a visible issue during the upcoming election.
The Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC, along with Early Childhood Educators of BC (ECEBC) and the Waitlisted Project are supporting the province-wide brigade, which is a call to action for more financial support from the federal government to support childcare in Canada.
Kelowna’s event is being organized by Childhood Connections, the local ECEBC Branch, and Starbright Child Development Center, and is set to take place on Saturday, Oct. 5 at 9:30 a.m.
The organizers are encouraging families, childcare providers, grandparents and their children to meet at the Parkinson Rec Centre in Kelowna with signs and noisemakers.
“This isn’t just about childcare, it’s about empowering families and supporting the economic success of our community by supporting working parents with affordable, quality health care,” said Melissa Hunt, executive director of Childhood Connections.
“Childcare and early years development and education should be an important priority for all the candidates running in this federal election because these are the formative years that will set our children up for success in the future if they have the right support now. It’s about being proactive rather than reactive.”
Childhood Connections hopes that the elected MPs will support the $10-a-day-plan by protecting the $50 million B.C. receives annually for childcare and the commitment of growing that sum over the next few years.
According to Hunt, there are statistics that indicate that approximately 60 per cent of children in the Central Okanagan are in some sort of childcare arrangement. In addition, 85 per cent of a child’s development occurs before the age of five, which shows the importance of a child’s experiences during their first few years of life.