Delta's Child Care Needs Assessment and Action Plan
Quality childcare is vital to the overall health of a community. In 2019, the Union of BC Municipalities provided funding for the City of Delta to complete a Child Care Needs Assessment and develop a Child Care Strategy and Action Plan. The Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia (SPARC BC) was retained to conduct the study. Working with partner agencies throughout Delta and SPARC BC, the project began in July of 2019 and was fully completed in the fall of 2020.
Diverse engagement and research methods were utilized to conduct the needs assessment and develop the Strategy and Action Plan, including the following:
- Review of relevant child care-related data, including UBCM inventory, Fraser Health, Early Childhood Development Instruments, tax filer and Census data for the City of Delta;
- Two online surveys for parents and child care providers (392 parents and 63 child care providers have participated);
- Interviews with 10 child care operators; and
- A number of community workshops and stakeholder meetings.
- There are 13,859 children under the age of 12 in Delta (2016).
- North Delta has the largest concentration of children under the age of 12 (59%).
- As of 2019, there were 2,383 child care spaces in Delta delivered through 162 child care programs.
- 8 out of 10 of the child care spaces in Delta are in private facilities.
- Throughout the engagement process, the state of childcare was described as a huge community limitation whereby parents are struggling to afford and access quality child care and care providers are struggling to operate.
- In 2019, Delta had 17.3 group child care spaces per 100 children with the lowest ratio for infant and toddlers (5.5).
- The birth to 36 months and school-aged spaces are most needed in North Delta and Ladner.
- It was estimated that Delta would need to add additional 1,051 child care spaces in the next 10 years to reach the current Canadian average ratio per 100 children (27.2).
- In September 2020, the Childcare and Youth Committee formed a Delta’s Child Care Task Force.
- November 26, 2020: Social Planner presented the findings of the Child Care Needs Assessment and Action Plan to the Delta’s Child Care Task Force.