Their vision is “inspiring strength in families and exploring the potential in children an youth,” and for 30 years the Bulkley Valley Child Development Centre has been doing just that.
CDC Executive Director Kerri Kluss said that the organization was born in Telkwa in 1981.
“Over the years we’ve grown and now we have 22 staff members and we service 22 communities,” said Kluss.
The CDC runs programs from Fort Babine to Atlin. Kluss said they work with over 400 children and families a year.
There are also CDC facilities established in Houston, which are run in space provided in partnership with Northern Health.
Hazelton and Smithers also have spaces that offer child care resources from the CDC.
Occupational Therapist Regina Tworow was with the CDC for its early days, and remembers what it was like then.
“We were in the sunday school room of the St. James Anglican Church,” she said, recalling their cramped quarters.
Back then, they had an office, storage room and therapy room, all in one.
When they moved to Poplar Road in 1999, they rapidly expanded to fill the new square-footage.
Tworow has been with the CDC for 20 years, and said that the style of therapy was certainly more traditional back then, but now the CDC focuses on being more of an outreach centre, getting out into people’s homes.
With 30 years on their belt, Kluss said that they are very thankful to the community, the families, service providers and the business community who continues to support their work.
Part of that ‘thank you’ will be their Blue Jeans Ball on Jan. 28 at the Hudson Bay Lodge in Smithers.
Tickets will go on sale in December.
Kluss said the CDC is always looking to grow. Among their plans is to eventually bring their programs under one roof as even their current building increasingly gets closer to capacity as they provide new programs each year.
The CDC is funded through the Ministry of Children and Family Development.