Social Development

Four early childhood development centres to be established (08/11/13)

NB 1674

Nov. 13, 2008

FREDERICTON (CNB) - Four new early childhood development centres are being established in New Brunswick to provide integrated services to preschool-aged children and their families. Social Development Minister Mary Schryer announced today a call for proposals from community-based networks interested in establishing the centres.

The demonstration sites will be piloted over a three-year period. The provincial government will invest $400,000 during this fiscal year to establish the sites, two of which will be anglophone and two of which will be francophone. The centres will offer early learning and child-care services, parenting programs and support groups, toy-lending libraries, and information on healthy lifestyle choices.

"There is compelling research that shows integrated child development programs improve outcomes for children by providing a strong foundation for learning, behaviour and health that continues through the school years and into adulthood," Schryer said. "Our children are our most precious resource, and we must ensure that our programs are of high quality and integrated for young children to build the lifelong foundations of success that will help our province achieve self-sufficiency."

The request for proposals may be downloaded at www.gnb.ca/3000. Closing date for submissions is Dec. 18, 2008. The successful community-based network applicants will be announced in early 2009.

Earlier this year, the provincial government unveiled a long-term strategy for early childhood development, Be Ready for Success: A 10-year early childhood strategy for New Brunswick. The piloting of early childhood development centres is part of the Early Childhood Strategy Action Plan, 2008-2009.

Copies of the 10-year strategy and action plan are available at online at http://www.gnb.ca/0017/ELCC/strategy-e.asp, or may be obtained by calling 506-453-2950.

08/11/13

MEDIA CONTACT: Sonya Gilks, communications, Department of Social Development, 506-444-3730.

08/11/13