Early Years Centres
In 2013, the Government of B.C. released the B.C. Early Years Strategy, government’s long-term plan to ensure that young British Columbians have the best possible start in life. The Strategy highlights the importance of multiple partners coordinating efforts to achieve the ”one-government” vision for the early years. This approach recognizes that healthy early childhood development and improving outcomes for all children, including the most vulnerable, requires the joint effort of multiple partners – not only provincial ministries, but health authorities, school districts, service providers, local governments and the federal government.
A key component of the Strategy is the development of B.C. Early Years Centres. There are currently 26 provincially funded Early Years Centres located across B.C., representing a range of innovative approaches that offer one-stop, convenient access to information, services and referrals for families with young children. Building on what is currently present in communities, BC Early Years Centres are about communities working together to ensure that families have access to early years services that foster the health, well-being and development of children. B.C. Early Years Centres exist in schools, child development centres, recreation centers, storefronts, local not-for-profit service provider locations, and as mobile sites. A B.C. Early Years Centre builds on what currently exists in a community; expanding to include multiple agencies, health and education partners, and others to deliver the following key service features:
- Parenting support information and/or programs to support children’s social and emotional well-being.
- Access to early intervention information, referrals, and/or services.
- Health promotion and prevention information and/or services.
- Information and/or linkages that support young children transitioning to Kindergarten.
- Information on child care programs available in the local community.
For more information about B.C. Early Years Centres, visit the Provincial Office for the Early Years website.