Saanich Neighbourhood Place is hoping to open the doors to its new centre in July, pending final council approval. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich Neighbourhood Place is hoping to open the doors to its new centre in July, pending final council approval. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich childcare agency awaits final approval on much-needed new facility

Saanich Neighbourhood Place keen to open new centre this summer, expand options for community

Saanich Neighbourhood Place, a non-profit that provides childcare and family services, is going before council on June 21 to request approval of the final touches needed at their newly built daycare.

The opening of this daycare is meaningful to staff at Saanich Neighbourhood Place because of the value they place on providing accessible childcare to families.

Amendments requested are modifications to some features of the daycare, such as the outdoor playground.

The project was built behind Pearkes Recreation Centre and final approval from council on June 21 would allow them to open their doors to more families in need of childcare, as early as July.

“We definitely saw an increase in demand for family and outreach services during the pandemic, which also highlighted just how important it is for families to have reliable childcare and supportive programs,” said organization executive director Corinne Hilton Bains in a release.

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Bains said without access to childcare, many families struggled with the stay-at-home challenges brought on by the pandemic.

The project aims to add 49 new childcare spaces – 24 for infant care and 25 for preschoolers.

“That may not sound like a lot but we will be expecting that these families will remain with us for many years,” Bains added.

The two childcare programs that Saanich Neighbourhood Place operates are always waitlisted, she said, and the new centre has piqued the interest of hundreds of families, even before its opening.


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megan.atkinsbaker@saanichnews.com

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