Childcare options available for working Ponoka parents

Parents have some options available to them when it comes to early childcare in Ponoka.

Parents have some options available to them when it comes to early childcare in Ponoka.

The Ponoka Child Care Centre is opening its doors Sept. 3 for children aged 12 months to kindergarten age. Shannon McArthur, owner and program director, wanted to give parents with an option of full-time day care as there is none in Ponoka.

The day-care centre is on the lower level of the Word of Life Church but is a separate space from the church. Her goal is to provide care and learning to kids before they are ready to go into elementary school. “To me what’s important is the overall development of the child.”

McArthur feels her teaching background is an important tool to work with children and meet provincial standards of care.

“This is a space dedicated to children,” McArthur added.

Creating a lasting impression on the children is what she looks forward to most of all. Right now the centre is offering full-time care for children; special rates are available to kindergarten students and if parents require part-time care, McArthur will consider the option.

“We work on the idea of guaranteed care,” she said. “We always have a spot for you.”

She is taking applications from staff and has hired her sister-in-law Heather McArthur to work with the centre. Heather has six years’ experience as an education assistant and McArthur has been teaching between children for the last 10 years.

“We’re definitely focused on the milestones of children…That’s definitely important to me as a teacher,” she explained.

The daycare is open Monday to Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. For those interested in finding out more, an open house is set for Aug. 29 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. or call 403-704-0166.

Home care available for children

Another licensed business parents can get home care is with Little Treasures Family Day Home. The company has been in business for 20 years, giving parents a place for their children.

Providers are available before and after school and on weekends to allow parents a chance to drop their children off, says co-ordinator Crystal Ahtila. Little Treasures has 12 caregivers who are able to meet parents’ needs. “We place them (children) with appropriate providers,” said Ahtila.

As an accredited business able to provide childcare, providers must be able to offer multicultural programs for children and meet their development needs. Care is usually provided in caregivers’ homes “These girls work pretty hard to get accreditation.”

Each of the 12 providers is trained in basic first aid, and two are certified as childcare supervisors. Four others are working to become certified as child development workers. These provincial requirements are a way of guaranteeing proper childcare, said Ahtila. “A lot of parents enjoy knowing that security is there.”

“It’s a family environment,” she added.

Providers must also undergo a criminal check.

A place to be after school

The Ponoka Youth Centre offers after school care for children aged five to 11 years and also the School’s Out Days program starts Sept. 3; the centre provides activities for parents’ children when there is no school owing to professional development days.

“It’s a place that kids can go. They can have fun and meet new kids,” says Morgen Chernick, program director for the youth centre.

There are also programs for teens aged 12 to 17 or Grades 7 to 12. There is a teen drop-in Friday and Saturday nights from 6 to 10 p.m. giving youths a place to have fun.

“It’s a safe, supportive, supervised environment,” said Chernick.

The goal is to give kids a chance also to build social skills. “We have programs for kids kindergarten to Grade 12,”

For more information on other youth programs offered check out the centre’s website:

All three centres are licenced and accredited by the provincial government and all offer government subsidies for eligible families.

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Alberta male team takes silver in Winter Games relay speed skating

Alberta was close behind Quebec in the team relay speed skating finals

Alberta was crowned champions in Wheelchair Basketball at Canada Winter Games

Ontario won silver while Quebec took home the bronze medal

Rabbits saved from barn fire in Ponoka County

The Ponoka County East District Fire Department was called to a barn fire

Bashaw peewee club’s season comes to an abrupt end

Players decide not to go into playoffs without one of their teammates

Ponoka man attacked by dogs issues plea to town council

Troubles with bylaw and handling of court case prompts presentation to council

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

WATCH: Pet therapy brings calmness to Winter Games athletes

Canada Winter Games in Red Deer continue on until March 2nd

R. Kelly charged with 10 counts of sexual abuse

R&B star has been accused of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls for years

Child advocacy centre raising funds through Dream Home Lottery

The child advocacy centre in Red Deer uses its resources to help kids all over Central Alberta

Trudeau tells Canadians to listen to clerk in SNC-Lavalin matter

Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick delivered a blunt assessment at the House of Commons justice

Mueller report looming, new attorney general in hot seat

Robert Mueller is required to produce a confidential report to pursue or decline prosecutions

B.C. woman shares story of abuse with church officials ahead of Vatican summit

Leona Huggins was the only Canadian in the gathering ahead of a historic summit at the Vatican

Sylvan Lake’s Megan Cressey misses Freestyle Skiing Big Air podium

Alberta’s Jake Sandstorm captured silver in the men Freestyle Skiing Big Air contest

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Most Read