The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) has received grant funding from the Union of British Columbian Municipalities (UBCM) to conduct a community child care study and develop a future action plan.
On June 25, 2019, Council received Information Report No. 19-080 regarding the Whistler Child Care Planning Project. The report informed Council of the UBCM grant funding and provided an outline of the project that will be completed between now and early 2020.
Two child care surveys were conducted in October 2019. The Parent Survey helped us to better understand the types of child care parents use, barriers they encounter, and preferred child care arrangements moving forward. The Provider Survey helped us to better understand the types of child care offered in Whistler, future trends, barriers faced, expansion plans and what can be done to ensure Whistler has enough child care spaces for the next 5 to 10 years.
As a condition of the funding for a child care study and action plan, the RMOW must complete this project no later than March 1, 2020 and submit a final report no later than March 30, 2020. Key project deliverables and the anticipated timeline are described below.
|Space inventory||June–Aug 2019||Research and seek child care provider input to determine number of facilities, locations, care spaces by type, access rates, waitlist numbers, etc. in accordance with inventory requirements outlined in the program requirements.|
|Stakeholder engagement||June–Oct 2019||Use stakeholder survey and child care provider survey to determine current state, trends, action ideas, barriers, etc. related to child care in Whistler. Stakeholders will include parents, child care providers, Indigenous and under-served populations.|
|Policy and bylaw review and analysis||July–Sept 2019||Directly contact key RMOW staff and other jurisdictions to compile and review relevant policies and bylaws.|
|Current state of child care in Whistler||Sept–Oct 2019||Use research and provider input to determine child care utilization rate and patterns, stakeholder concerns, program and service information, and programs most needed.|
|Trends and future needs||Sept–Oct 2019||Use research and provider input to determine trends related to the number, location, care types and spaces.|
|Actions and targets||Late Oct, early Nov 2019||Stakeholder and staff workshops to formulate short- (1-2 years), medium- (2-5 years) and long-term (5-10 years) child care planning targets.|
|Action plan||Late Nov 2019–March 2020||Develop required 10 year action plan containing targets, trends analysis, current state and space inventory. Endorsement of plan by Council.|
Community engagement and consultation
|Child care providers (e.g., daycares, afterschool program providers)||Survey, direct contact on necessary data collection, and through workshops.|
|Parents||Survey and involvement of some representatives in the stakeholder action planning workshop.|
|Other local governments||Contact directly as needed to gather data and information.|
|Lil’wat Nation and Squamish Nation||Contact directly to gather information.|
|School Districts (No. 48 and 93)||Contact directly to gather information.|
On January 4, 2019, Council received a letter from the Honourable Katrine Conroy, Minister of Children and Family Development and the Honourable Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care announcing a provincial partnership with UBCM to provide funding for the creation of child care space and for community child care planning. On January 22, 2019, Council passed a resolution directing staff to make an application for community child care planning.
The RMOW submitted a successful grant application and has received the first instalment (75 per cent) of the total granted amount of $24,840.
Under the UBCM program, funded projects must collect information regarding the child care needs of the community, create an inventory of existing child care spaces, identify space creation targets over the next 10 years, and identify actions that can be taken to meet those space creation targets. The information gathered must be shared with the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development, and may be used in future provincial funding decisions such as the grants for funding for child care space noted above.
For questions or comments on this project: