Over the 37 years it has operated, the Kaatza Child Care and Early Learning Centre has made a lot of friends.
These friends, made up of members, volunteers, and supporters, are being invited for one final farewell party for the centre, Saturday, October 15.
“We just felt that there needed to be some closure,” the centre’s head supervisor Wendy Fetchko said. “People are shocked, so we thought it would be a good way of bringing it to a close.”
The centre’s 37 years of operating in Lake Cowichan will be highlighted by a large collection of photographs, which people will be invited to take.
Unfortunately, the photos only cover the centre’s history post September 8, 1991, as that is when the United Church – where the centre was located previously – burnt down.
During the October 15 celebration, to take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., coffee, cake, and memories will be shared by those in attendance.
The centre will still look like a child care centre, as it isn’t until the subsequent week when it will be gutted to help pay for losses. A local sale will help clear it of some items, while other items will be sold to other child care centres.
The centre announced its closure last month, providing parents with one month’s notice to find other child care services.
The closure came as a result of a non-sustainable decrease in enrollment, resulting in a monthly loss of $4,000.
Many factors tied into this enrollment decrease, including grant funding cutbacks, full day Kindergarten, child care subsidies changes, alongside other things, such as difficult economic times.
The parents of all of the 14 children enrolled at the centre have found alternative child care accommodations, thanks to a few new centres opening up in town.
Those that were enrolled for the social aspect have found accommodations at the playschool available at the Cowichan Lake Sports Arena.