Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada

November 16, 2007 14:15 ET

The Government of Canada Invests in Early Childhood Development in Manitoba

EAST SELKIRK, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Nov. 16, 2007) - James Bezan, Member of Parliament for Selkirk-Interlake, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, today announced federal support for early childhood development in the communities of Selkirk-Interlake. The funding is provided through the Understanding the Early Years (UEY) Initiative. Through UEY, the federal government supports communities in the creation of local action plans that address the developmental needs of children under six.

Today's announcement of $296,152 in federal funding brings the total Understanding the Early Years (UEY) investment in Manitoba communities to approximately $800,000.

"The Government of Canada is delivering on our commitments on early childhood development and child care," said MP James Bezan. "This project will bring together families, teachers and community leaders to work on the developmental needs of young children in Selkirk-Interlake and to develop an action plan to respond to those needs."

Information collected through UEY helps communities understand how their children are doing physically, socially and cognitively, and how families and the community are supporting these children. Each three-year project is managed by a non-profit organization which works in collaboration with local organizations that are committed to helping children and families reach their full potential.

Understanding the Early Years is one example of how the Government of Canada invests in children. This year alone, the Government of Canada is providing nearly $5.6 billion in support of early learning and child care through transfers, direct spending and tax measures:

- $1.1 billion in cash transfers to provinces and territories.

- $2.4 billion annually through monthly payments to parents for every child under the age of six through the Universal Child Care Benefit.

- $695 million in recognition of child care expenses through the child care expense deduction.

- Budget 2007 provides about $1.5 billion per year in tax support for families with children through the new Child Tax Credit.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Visit the HRSDC Web site - www.hrsdc.gc.ca.


BACKGROUNDER

What is UEY?

The Understanding the Early Years (UEY) Initiative provides communities with the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Canada's children.

UEY does this by helping communities to use local information and to foster partnerships among community groups to make decisions about the best policies and programs for young children to thrive.

The planned budget for the initiative is $45.3 million.

What information is collected?

Communities collect information on:

- the development of their kindergarten children;

- family and community factors that influence their children's development;

- local programs and services that help children develop to their full potential; and

- local socio-economic characteristics.

What does UEY do for communities?

Information collected through UEY helps communities understand how their children are doing physically, socially and cognitively, and how families and the community are supporting these children. Parents, teachers and others can then learn about what works in their community and together come up with creative solutions to help their children do even better.

What does UEY involve?

Each selected UEY community is given funding of approximately $350,000, which is allocated over three years. The funds are used to increase awareness in the community about the importance of children's early years, to collect and share information about the developmental needs of young children in the community, and to develop an action plan to address gaps in local supports for children and families. Each site is managed by a non-profit community-based organization which works in collaboration with a coalition made up of local organizations and individuals committed to helping children and families reach their full potential.

How are communities selected?

Interested communities must submit a proposal through a Call for Proposals process. There are currently no Calls for Proposals open. Once open, Calls for Proposals will be posted on the Human Resources and Social Development Canada's Web site.

Visit www.hrsdc.gc.ca for further information.

Contact Information

  • Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559
    or
    Office of Minister Solberg
    Pema Lhalungpa
    Press Secretary
    819-994-2482