Workforce Grant Helps Create New Childcare Facility in Teton Valley
Published March 27, 2023
Written by Brian McDermott, Executive Director, Teton Regional Economic Coalition (TREC).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE--Driggs, Idaho – March 13, 2023- Workforce Grant Helps Create New Childcare Facility in Teton Valley The Teton Valley Collaborative for Early Learning has received over 1 million dollars in grant funding from the Idaho Workforce Development Council to establish a new childcare facility in Teton Valley. The grant will be used to relocate, place, and renovate a 4,500 square foot home, generously donated by Teton Valley resident, Alex Gambal, to serve as a cooperative center for early care and learning. A diverse group of stakeholders, including business, nonprofit, municipal, county, and Teton School District leaders, have come together to move the building to Teton School District #401 land in downtown Driggs. A local builder, Wilkinson-Montesano, and various contractors will retrofit and assemble the building to meet the requirements of a facility that will accommodate at least 70 Teton Valley children aged 0-5, as well as serve as a central location for an early childhood education lending library and provide training space for providers, parents, and caregivers. This project could not move forward without the generous support of the TSD #401 Board of Trustees. The grant funding will be allocated to cover the costs of moving and preparing the center, start-up expenses, and supporting the operations and expansion of existing Teton Valley providers. The Teton Regional Economic Coalition (TREC), experienced in administering large scale grants, will serve as the grant administrator for the project. This community project will provide many opportunities over the coming months for interested individuals and businesses to support all of the things that need to happen in an escalated time frame to help this project become a reality for our community! Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how you would like to help- whether it is for your in kind donations, help with logistics, or providing support in whatever way you can- construction support, excavating, landscaping, fundraising, etc. Contracted services and program delivery will be subject to a bidding process that has yet to be finalized. The community is invited to attend the TREC Chamber of Commerce Mixer, Tuesday, March 21, 4:30-6pm, at the Teton Geo Center. Everyone is welcome. Learn more about this critical need for early learning opportunities for 0-5 year olds and how this impacts residents and local business owners. Gain insight on how this coordinated response of the Collaborative for Early Learning and numerous community stakeholders resulted in securing this grant funding to undertake this unique and exciting project.
About the Childcare Crisis in Teton Valley: Teton County currently faces a child care desert, with far more families needing care than what is currently available. The valley’s challenges are similar to other communities in the mountain west, including a dearth of available workforce and limited availability of affordable properties for both families and childcare providers. Regardless of the income of respondents, finding child care presents a challenge due to the extremely limited options, especially for the 0-2 age range.
About the Idaho Workforce Development Council Child Care Expansion Grants: Idaho faces a significant gap of nearly 20,000 childcare seats, making it necessary to invest in Child Care Expansion. The Workforce Development Council administers this funding to support employers and/or childcare providers willing to build new on-site or near-site child care facilities or expand existing facilities. Established by the Office of the Governor in 2017, the Idaho Workforce Development Council helps bring cohesion, expertise, and funding to support workforce development partners throughout the state. For more information, visit https://wdc.idaho.gov/.