Labour shortage has Island childcare providers in crisis mode

Labour shortage has Island childcare providers in crisis mode
WatchBack to school is fast approaching, and for many parents, this year's return is bringing mounting anxieties.

Back to school is fast approaching but growing COVID-19 cases, cost of school supplies, and the labour shortage could leave hundreds of Island families in the lurch.

This year, before and after school programs that support 1,200 children on the mid-Island —with subsidized care for the many families who need it — are now in jeopardy.

The labour shortage has caused massive shortages of workers to staff them.

READ MORE: Ministry of Education announces mask requirements, safety measures for upcoming school year

The BGC Clubs of Central Vancouver Island, formerly known as Boys and Girls Clubs, and many more non-profit daycares have called it an unfolding crisis.

“We are facing the biggest staffing crisis that we’ve faced in fifty years,” said Karen Love, executive director of BGC Central Vancouver Island. “We’ve been on this Island offering childcare for 50 years and we’ve never seen anything like this in September,”

The non-profit operates before and after school care in 14 locations from Ladysmith to the Comox Valley and needs to hire 20 people to run those programs. Love says she doesn’t have a single resume responding to their many help wanted ads.

“It really is going to impact our families. We’ve already had to tell our families, come September we may not be able to offer you a space and we have never had to do that,” said Love.

Love is pleading for anyone who enjoys working with children to come forward, no experience necessary, as BGC Central Vancouver Island would train the right fits.

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Skye RyanSkye Ryan

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