Province providing nearly $18 million to Alberta's child care sector

May 7 2020, 10:14 am

Alberta’s child care sector is getting a big boost from the provincial government.

In preparation for the economy to restart and Albertans getting back to work following the COVID-19 pandemic, the Province of Alberta has announced a $17.8 million investment in grants for the child care sector.

“Access to quality child care is going to be an important part of getting Alberta’s economy back on track,” said Minister of Children’s Services, Rebecca Schulz, in the release.

“We’re providing this money so child care centres will be ready to care for kids as soon as health guidelines allow.”

The money will be dispersed in a phased approach, with $6.7 million going towards centres immediately receiving a one time grant covering up to 25% of overhead costs.

The second phase will come with reopening, when centres will see a grant for cleaning and sanitation supplies to ensure that they can abide by public health guidelines. Phase 2 will disperse $3.2 million.

Another $6.9 million will come in Phase 3, three months after reopening, when centres will potentially see a grant helping with deferred bills as well as to address any unforeseen operational issues, the release states.

“We appreciate the government’s efforts to assist operators during the first phase of the province’s relaunch strategy,” said the Chair of Alberta Association of Child Care Operators, Anita Turna, in the release.

“This money will help operators start reopening their centres and support parents’ return to work. We look forward to working with the Government of Alberta on a more long-term and predictable funding model for the sector.”

Up to $1 million total in funding will be accessible to approved family day home agencies, which will go towards supporting operations, supplies, and equipment necessary for abiding by public health guidelines.