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Construction of Whitecap Dakota First Nation daycare underway

Over $2 million in joint funding was announced Tuesday towards the building of a daycare on the Whitecap Dakota First Nation south of Saskatoon.
Over $2 million in joint funding was announced Tuesday towards the building of a daycare on the Whitecap Dakota First Nation south of Saskatoon. Brent McGillivray / Global News

WHITECAP DAKOTA FIRST NATION, Sask. – Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall was at Whitecap Dakota First Nation Tuesday along with other dignitaries to celebrate the start of construction on a daycare. Joint funding was also announced to develop the early learning centre which will cost over $2 million.

“This investment will give young families the opportunity to expand their horizons and prepare their children for future success,” said Wall.

In addition to the $1.5 million committed by the federal and provincial governments, BMO Financial Group is contributing $250,000 and $260,000 will come from the First Nation.

READ MORE: Joint task force making headway on aboriginal outcomes in Sask.

The province has also committed to funding 45 of the 56 spaces at the daycare on a yearly basis. The remaining spaces are federally funded.

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“We originally built a 22-seat daycare but that daycare is maxed out … we have a waiting list,” said Darcy Bear, chief of the Whitecap Dakota First Nation.

“Our new early learning center is another example of our efforts with other governments to break down the walls of segregation and sets the children of Whitecap up for a future of opportunities.”

The provincial government says this growing First Nation workforce south of Saskatoon has significantly increased demand for aboriginal child care on the reserve.

“These new child care spaces will help ensure parents and caregivers living and working on Whitecap Dakota First Nation have every opportunity to participate fully in our growing economy,” said Saskatchewan Education Minister Don Morgan.

The centre will be attached to Whitecap Elementary School and is expected to be ready by the start of the 2016 school year.