Biinoojinsauk Child Care Centre
The Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle has a long history of serving the Aboriginal population in the County of Simcoe and Northern York Region. The provision of services to Aboriginal children has been identified as a service gap since BANAC was formed in 1989.
The need for early childhood development in urban Aboriginal communities in the County of Simcoe was identified in 1991 in a study produced by BANAC entitled, "Towards a Balanced Lifestyle". The Board and Staff of BANAC continue to work to meet this objective.
The Importance of Culture in an Aboriginal Child Care Centre
Our centre’s enhance a positive sense of identity and understanding of the Aboriginal Heritage through a culturally based curriculum. Our programming provides for the wholistic nourishment of our children. Their spiritual growth, self-esteem, personal validation and identity will be met at our centre. Our centre’s recognize the need to deliver culturally and community relevant teaching and develop programs that are family centered and culturally appropriate.
Our vision is that our children are able to reach their full potential and our communities take on responsibility to ensure this happens. Aboriginal people view the care of their children as one of the most important responsibilities of a community and share the belief that "children are the future".
We believe children should be children and should enjoy developing and practicing their skills while socializing and playing with others. We provide an environment where children gain confidence in their ability to do and make things. Our children are guided by responsible teachers; nurturing, giving, caring and a positive influence. We believe our children will flourish in a culturally enriched, positive and friendly environment.
High quality child care is sensitive, responsive, personal, developmentally and culturally appropriate and not custodial. It is also characterized by small group sizes, well trained staff, adequate health, safety and physical environment precautions, high adult to child ratios and stable consistent care giving.
Our goals in meeting and supporting the child care needs of Aboriginal families are:
- Recognize the need for Aboriginal children to receive culturally and community relevant teaching and care.
- Develop programs that are family centered; educational and community based; culturally appropriate and sufficiently funded to meet the need.
- Provide ongoing and continuous care for the children in our care.
- Provide for parent involvement through parent council, volunteerism, parent education, parent orientation and planning with parents.
BANAC is a registered nonprofit organization. Our child care centre’s receive funding through the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, and the County of Simcoe. The centre’s are governed by a voluntary board of directors.