The Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) is a non-profit, non-partisan policy research institute with a mandate to work towards an equitable, high quality, publicly funded, inclusive ECEC system for all Canadians. CRRU works with other researchers, NGOs, advocacy groups, government policy makers across multiple levels of government and the early childhood education community.
CRRU was created in the early 1980s as a project at the University of Toronto's Centre for Urban and Community Studies and received initial funding from the Ontario government in 1982. In 1985, CRRU also began to receive funds from the Government of Canada under a new funding program established to support child care projects. Thus, CRRU was able to develop and expand its scope of resources, which came to include a resource and research library, publications and collections, a bi-annual synthesis of available data on Canadian ECEC programs, policy expertise, and this website. The Government of Canada was CRRU's primary funder until the federal government withdrew funding from child care projects in 2007. At that time, CRRU left U of T and became an independent non-profit organization, as it is today.
What we stand and work for
CRRU began with a mandate to work towards a universal, high quality, publicly funded, inclusive child care system in Canada. The mandate has remained essentially the same over the 30 year period. Learn more About Martha Friendly and CRRU's team.
What we do
CRRU's activities encompass "knowledge production" and "knowledge transfer". This means that CRRU:
- engages in a variety of kinds of policy-related ECEC and social policy research
- works with and supports others-- researchers, governments, community-- who are engaged in ECEC research and policy development
- organizes and disseminates relevant research and policy focused on ECEC and related topics, both our own and others
- communicates about research and policy on ECEC, family policy and related social issues through multiple mediums to other researchers, policy makers, the child care community, families and the public
Among CRRU's key activities during the past 30 years have been the Early childhood education and care in Canada reports, developed and published by CRRU about every two years. This now- eleven report series is unique in a number of ways. As such, it has reliably served as Canada’s main source of consistently collected and presented, cross-Canada, longitudinal data and information about regulated child care, kindergarten and parental leave. The comprehensive and detailed ECEC in Canada reports are available on this page.
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