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'Million Steps' organizers hope many child care centres will get involved [CA-BC]

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Sharkey, Denise
Publication Date: 
27 Jul 2007

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Organizers of the upcoming 'A Million Steps for Child Care' awareness-raising event are hoping that child care centres all over the local area get involved.

Campbell River's Shelagh Germyn, a veteran ultra-marathoner, is planning to run from Campbell River to Victoria from Oct. 9 - Oct. 16. The seven day journey is designed to focus the attention of the province on child care, particularly on ongoing funding issues affecting families and child care centres.

"Any child care centres that would like to be part of it - the more the better," Germyn said.

Germyn decided she wanted to do something to raise the profile of child care funding problems in B.C. after she saw coverage of a town hall meeting back in February, called in response to cuts to child care funding. Watching the parents and child care workers share their frustrations, some of them near tears, made Germyn want to do get involved. She contacted local child care coordinators and 'A Million Steps for Child Care' was born. Local child care centres are planning to create big banners, decorated with the footprints of local children, to accompany Germyn on her journey. Once she arrives in Victoria, child care proponents are planning to hold the banners end to end on the lawn of the B.C. Legislature in order to make a big statement.

Child care centres in communities between Campbell River and Victoria are also being asked to create banners and to run along with Germyn as she passes through their communities.

Germyn said the BCGEU has offered to help with the plan by providing an RV and T-shirts for participants. A donation of gas for the RV would also be appreciated. For information, call Shelagh Germyn at 850-1110. Child care centres interested in getting involved are asked to call Gwen Bennett at Cari's Infant and Toddler Centre at 286-1193.

- reprinted from the Courier-Islander