Province offering one-time grants to help child care providers in B.C.

Province offering one-time grants to help child care providers in B.C.
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The Government of B.C. says it will be investing $20 million in one-time grants to help licensed child care providers meet the challenges of additional pandemic-related health and safety costs.

According to the Province, B.C. will offer the spaces while also supporting access to inclusive, quality and affordable child care.

The 2022 Health and Safety Grant is the Province’s way of helping address concerns raised by child care professionals due to the rise of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

The funds from the grants are meant to be used to buy cleaning supplies, sanitizer or masks, to hire an external company to clean, or additional staff to cover absences due to illness and to meet local needs.

“Child care professionals are the heart of child care and they have been working tirelessly since the pandemic started. As a parent of a young child, I know first-hand the tremendous difference their support is making to families and communities,” said Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care. “We are committed to responding to the needs of child care providers during this ever-changing situation. These new grants will help child care providers continue to keep children safe and healthy by providing funding for COVID-related staffing, supplies and cleaning needs.”

The government says that licensed providers who are open and regularly receiving provincial funding will get a grant of $160 per space based on the facility’s maximum capacity — which equates to a group provider with 25 spaces receiving a grant of about $4,000.

“Making sure that child care centres continue to be safe spaces for children and professionals is a top priority,” Chen said. “That’s why, since spring 2020, we have provided more than $320 million in temporary emergency funding and, with this, more than $73 million in health and safety grants. We will continue to support child care providers to navigate the pandemic as we work toward our ChildCareBC plan to make child care a core service available to every family that wants it, when they need it, at a price they can afford.”

In addition to the Health and Safety Grants, the Province recently announced that child care facilities that are receiving CCOF from the B.C. government would receive 250,000 rapid antigen tests to support health and safety.

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