ChildCare BC New Spaces Fund provides $3 million to the Kelowna Airport YMCA Childcare Facility

April 28, 2022

The Province has announced they will provide $3 million toward the Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care facility from the ChildCare BC New Spaces Fund. The City of Kelowna, Kelowna International Airport (YLW), KF Aerospace and the YMCA are partnering to provide this child care facility on the YLW campus.

“It’s exciting that parents working in and around the Kelowna airport will soon have access to convenient child care right on-site to make their lives easier and give them peace of mind knowing their kids are accessing early learning close by,” said Katrina Chen, Minister of State for Child Care. “Since 2018, we have funded 16 child care projects to create 1,023 new licensed child care spaces in Kelowna. This project is a part of our 10-year ChildCareBC plan to create new spaces in communities throughout B.C. to ensure child care is a core service available when and where families need it.”

The Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care facility enables the creation of new licensed childcare, helping families access quality, affordable and inclusive child care while strengthening the local community.

“This project demonstrates what we can achieve when community partners and different levels of government come together for a common goal,” says City of Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran. “This project serves the community in alignment with the City of Kelowna’s OCP 2040 by supporting the development of child care spaces including accessible, affordable and inclusive spaces that meet the needs of citizens living or working in the Gateway.”

The Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care facility will provide 86 spaces:-    12 spaces: infant-toddler age-    50 spaces: 2.5 years – kindergarten age-    24 spaces: school age

“We are so excited to be able to collaborate with KF Aerospace and the YMCA to provide this childcare facility. As the airport community continues to grow, there will be increased demand for a child care facility on our campus” says Sam Samaddar, Airport Director, Kelowna International Airport. “This child care facility will support the unique staffing requirements of the airport campus and the greater community.”

KF Aerospace is a funding partner for the Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care Facility and was instrumental in bringing all partners together in the development of this facility.

“We are very pleased to partner with the Airport, City, Province and YMCA to develop this very important employee benefit for our staff” says Grant Stevens, Chief Corporate Services Officer. “As we continue to grow our staffing, we have a goal of removing barriers and increasing diversity in our trades.  Access to daycare is critical to ensuring we meet this goal and addressing work-life balance of all our employees.”

The Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care facility will be fully programmed and managed by the YMCA Okanagan.

“This new centre will mean that more families in our community have access to child care for their children,” says YMCA Vice President of Child Care, Danielle Miranda. “With increased demands for child care, and extensive waitlists in our area, many families are unable to find safe, affordable care for their children. As a trusted charity, the YMCA is devoted to improving this local issue, and this new partnership with the Kelowna International Airport and KF Aerospace will bring us one step closer to our goal.”

Groundbreaking for the Kelowna Airport YMCA Child Care facility will take place later this year with an anticipated opening of spring 2023.