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Rural childcare in Manitoba: New economic evidence

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Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM)
Prentice, Susan
Publication Date: 
1 May 2008

Excerpts from article:

In 2007, researchers "followed the money" to analyze the impact of childcare in Thompson, southwestern Parkland and in St-Pierre-Jolys. It was found that childcare is both an industry in its own right, as well as being an infrastructure that enables other sectors of the rural economy to function. The economic approach used complements long-standing evidence that confirms the value of childcare on children's development.

In Thompson, it was found that the childcare sector is made up of 337 licensed childcare spaces that collectively generate $2.1 million of direct revenue (through government funding and parent fees). Parkland's 362 licensed spaces are worth $1.73 million locally, and St- Pierre-Jolys's 76 licensed spaces have total revenues of over $455,000 per year.

These figures are impressive enough on their own, but their real impact is even larger. Using the economist's technique of input-output analysis, it was tracked how dollars raised in the childcare sector "ripple" through the local economy. Every $1 spent on childcare in Manitoba generates $1.58 worth of economic activity &em; meaning Thompson's $2.1 million childcare sector has economic impacts worth $3.4 million. In Parkland, the ripple effect of childcare generates $2.74 million annually, and in St-Pierre-Jolys, the value of childcare grows to over $700,000. Childcare, with its $1.58 of activity for every $1 of immediate spending, is a competitive element in local economic development.