Being proactive re: childcare worker shortage

Editor, Evan Matthews. / LAURA KEIL

by EVAN MATTHEWS, editor

Valemount has a growing problem with the lack of available licensed childcare.

This week, Manager of the Valemount Children’s Activity Society Krista Voth told the Goat the daycare is desperate for Early Childhood Educators (ECE) and ECE assistants, which is causing a growing waitlist for the centre.

Voth says the society will even consider hiring people to work while they take their courses.

Meanwhile, parents in the community are struggling to hold down jobs, especially during summer months when school is out. Some parents are even contemplating moving.

There have been more than 20 babies born in Valemount in the last year, according to the Children’s Activity Society.

While some are looking at solutions to address the childcare issue, the only thing for certain is that a gap exists in the community between the number of children and the available care.

Now the citizens of Valemount need to address it.

When the mill closed, people were fleeing in droves. The community has since recovered, in a transition from a resource extraction-based economy to a tourism-based economy.

As this community has longed for, people are coming and staying with their families. The community needs reliable childcare.

I don’t know what the solution is, but an issue exists.

Our community needs to work on viable solutions before families start to move away, or avoid moving here in the first place.

There are not many people I know of who can afford to take time away from work. The time to address the issue is now.

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