Family Centre History
The Family Centre Initiative….
In 1998, the Child Action Committee was formed. One year later the Early Childhood Sub-Group was formed as a working group of the Child Action Committee. With these two committees formed work began. The first draft of the Moose Jaw Region Early Childhood framework was created. In 2000, the committee was involved in planning the KidsFirst Program. It wasn’t until 2002 that all groups identified the priorities based on need and gaps identified in the Framework documents.
We were now able to establish and focus energies to fulfilling the needs as discovered. In the spring of 2004, both groups presented the Framework documents to community stakeholders such as the Child Action committee, RIC and the Interagency Management Committee.
In the fall of 2004, all parties involved soon identified that a community centre was certainly a priority. Developing a centre became the main focus of the groups and searching for locations to house the centre began. In the spring of 2004 the groups had thought they had found a potential location. The space was currently home to Ecole Fransakoise at Empire School. Ecole Franskoise was moving from that location and all groups involved decided we could use that space.
In March of 2005, we made presentations to the Board of Education, Moose Jaw School Division #1 requesting the use of that space. The motion was passed by Moose Jaw School Division #1 to support this concept in principle and to work with the Early Childhood Sub-Group towards using the school space for an Early Childhood Family Space. So the process began.
In June of 2005 a grant application for CIF funds was submitted. The funds going towards developing a Business plan for an Early Years Family Centre. July of 2005 brought disappointment as the grant request was denied. The groups were not going to give up and so a re-submission of the grant to CIF was submitted in October of 2005.
The re-submission showed new developments in the community. In accordance to the recommendation of the RIC Grants Committee, another funding request was also re-submitted to Prevention and Support. Not long after a $12,000 grant was approved from Prevention and Support Funds. In April of 2006 came more good news, the YM-YWCA our accountable partner, received grant money in the amount of $12,000.
With these monies available, the Early Childhood Collation was formed. This is the trial joining of Early Childhood Sub-Group of the Child Action Community (new name) and the Early Intervention Sub- Committee of the Interagency Management Committee to better manage and communicate the groups initiatives. (Family Place and UEY)
In June of 2006 Christine Boyzchuk was contracted through Early Childhood Sub-Group and the YMCA to carry out the Family Centre work plan. In 2007 the YMCA was confirmed as the initiative’s managing partner.
The KidsFirst Program allocated a portion of carry-over funds to assist with renovations and start up costs, in accordance to the plan endorsed by RIC Executive and ECD Unit. It was also at this time we come to learn that we will receive additional grant funding for a Family Centre Coordinator.
We carry onward searching for a suitable location; the primary focus is on school division space as it is accessible, safe and affordable.
A Family Place Working group is formed. The group consists of Christine Boyczuk - RIC Coordinator, Jeff Fox - YMCA CEO, Krista Bakke - KidsFirst Program Manager, Joan McMaster - Regional Kidsfirst/Chair of EC Coalition. The groups main focus would be to make recommendations to the EC Coalition.
It is now 20007 and the Working Group continues to explore location options including the Zion Church, Ross School, main street retail space and the former Moose Jaw Sash and Door location.
In July of 2008 YMCA management recommends to YMCA board of directors to purchase 679 Hall Street West as it is the best option for the upcoming Family Centre. The Board of Directors agrees and financing is quickly arranged.
With the location decided, development begins to move quickly. In September of 2008 office leases at the 679 Hall Street location are drafted and reviewed by potential tenants.
2009 brought excitement as the office space leases accumulate signatures. By June of 2009 the Moose Jaw Family YMCA has purchased the building and begins renovations to the building.
On June 24, 2009 the renovations are finally complete and office tenants can begin to move in. Lastly, in September 2009 the Family Centre Coordinator is hired and program planning begins.