As I left Sharon Gregson’s presentation at the Pemberton Children’s Centre last week, it struck me as incredible that our citizens who have no public voice and who are the most vulnerable in our society, yet who we are relying upon to be productive, even world-changing adults, are among the least funded and possibly the least respected by our various levels of government.
I’m talking about children from newborn to kindergarten age. These are the children whose parents struggle to find quality, affordable childcare so the adults in the household can work — an economic necessity for so many families.
Gregson was in town to present details on the Community Plan for a Public System of Integrated Early Care and Learning on behalf of the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C., the organization that developed the plan in partnership with the Early Childhood Educators of B.C.
Also known as the $10 a day plan — this document is a comprehensive, well thought out plan that aims to eliminate the child care crisis in B.C. Any adults who have looked for, or are looking for care for their children from infant to school age, know that child care spaces are at a premium. If you are lucky enough to get a spot in a quality child care setting, you’ll know that the monthly cost for full-time care might actually exceed the cost of your mortgage.
All across British Columbia, municipalities, school boards, labour unions, businesses, academics, community organizations, parents and early childhood educators support the plan. They want the provincial government to implement a cap on parent fees of $10 per day, build more child-care spaces and raise levels of training and wages for workers.
When you consider the staggering amount of development that occurs in humans between the ages of newborn and six years, it only makes sense that government provide the backing necessary to make quality child care a reality for everyone who needs and wants it, not just the lucky few who can find it and afford it.
Visit www.cccabc.bc.ca/plan/ to learn more about the plan, and to endorse it.
Plan advocates say we can all support the plan, which will soon be going into its third printing, by endorsing it individually and encouraging our MLAs and MPs, councillors and mayor, and school board representatives to support the plan.
Lumpy’s Epic Run, the annual run fest around Signal Hill starting at One Mile, takes place this Sunday (Oct. 21).
Registration begins at 9 a.m. on the beach at One Mile Lake. The race starts at 10 a.m. with an adult distance of 12 kilometres and a kids distance of five kilometers. Entry fee for adults is $15. Kids race free. All monies raise go to the Spud Valley Jackrabbit program. Refreshments and draw prizes at race end.
The third annual Winds of Change Wellness Gathering will take place next Thursday, (Oct. 25), at the Ullus Community Complex in Mount Currie.
From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Wellness Trade Show takes place with a wide range of exhibitors and six free Healthy Living Workshops. From 6 to 9 p.m., the gathering will feature keynote speaker, Dr. Art Hister, the award-winning celebrity medic.
A free catered dinner will be provided, and the winners of the Winds of Change Recognition Awards will be celebrated.
Visit www.thewellnessalmanac.com for more information.
The flu clinics are coming to Pemberton.
Clinics will take place in Pemberton at the Lions Villa Seniors Centre at 7420 Flint Street next Thursday, (Oct. 25), 9:30 a.m. to noon; at the Pemberton Health Unit drop in at 1403 Portage Road on Friday, Nov. 2, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; and by appointment (call public health at 604-894-6939) on Tuesday, Nov. 6 from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Remember to wear short sleeves and bring your B.C. CareCard.
To find additional clinic information, or if you qualify for a free flu shot, visit the Immunize B.C. website at www.immunizebc.ca or call the flu information line at 604-485-3239.
The Friends of the Pemberton Library are planning an even bigger and better Wine and Cheese fundraiser this year as the 20th annual version of the event will take place in the Grand Hall at the Pemberton Community Centre and in the library on Nov. 2 from 7 to 10 p.m.
Along with the usual assortment of wonderful baskets for the silent auction, there will also be some live auction items. A special addition to the event this year is live music provided by local artists. Delicious appetizers donated by local restaurants will also be on hand.
The ticket price of $20 includes appetizers and non-alcoholic drinks. Tickets are available at the library. Proceeds will go towards library programs or equipment.
Send comments and event listing ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org. The next Pemberton column will appear Nov. 1.