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CPCC set to reopen following months in limbo due to pandemic

October 1, 2020   ·   0 Comments

Written By ALYSSA PARKHILL

LOCAL JOURNALISM INITIATIVE REPORTER

The Caledon Parent-Child Centre (CPCC) is preparing to reopen its doors to the community.  

The team at CPCC have struggled being closed for in-person visits since March, senior staff say, and have faced their challenges like most other organizations in the community. But after months of closure, they are finally preparing their reopening. 

“Our resilient and creative team worked hard during the closure period to find alternative ways to serve our community. During this time, we have had tremendous support from all of our funders. But although it’s been challenging, overall, the experience has also shown us the incredible dedication of our board and staff and the strength of our community” said Shelly Ives-Sargent, Manager of Community Relations and Volunteers. “It has also reinforced to us our community’s capacity for working together to serve the needs of Caledon residents”

The CPCC team has always been dedicated to providing safe space for children to learn, grow and thrive. The organization has been offering programs and services to the Caledon community since 1987 and have wanted nothing more to continue to do so throughout the pandemic. 

They are preparing for their reopening in Bolton, planning what needs to be done to keep not only themselves safe, but the parents and their children they serve safe as well. 

The Region of Peel is supporting EarlyON providers with increased health and safety policies and training supports, as well as guidance regarding program resources, procedures should staff, a child, parent or caregiver gets sick, and assistance in acquiring personal protective equipment.

“Re-opening plans have been underway from a systems level for quite some time, but it is a huge job with many critical components. Primary, of course, was the need to ensure that Peel Public Health’s health and safety protocols were met,” Sargent said. “The Region of Peel is continuing to work with EarlyON service providers and community partners as guided by the Ministry of Education and Peel Public Health to keep children, parents, caregivers and staff safe.”

Their greatest challenge has been organizing and preparing all the steps to be able to safely reopen within a span of time. The CPCC team worked hard to perfect the process, to ensure that all safety measures were put into place and to have a detailed and comprehensive plan.

Virtual programs were offered while their locations remained closed.

“The greatest impact on the CPCC EarlyON sites has been the closure to ‘in-Centre’ programming and its impact on our community and staff. We have also had to do temporary layoffs of some staff and cease our use of in-person volunteers,” said Sargent. “All of our staff have shown incredible resiliency and creativity, learning new skills and working together remotely to ensure we could serve our families.”

The CPCC is planning on opening one site at a time to ensure a smooth, and safe transition. Bolton Centre will be the first to open. Although a firm date has yet to be announced for this reopening, it will take place in the very near future. For safety reasons, all programs offered will need to be pre-registered. There will also be a two-step screening process, and each session will limit the maximum number of participants allowed on-site. 

“We miss our families terribly. Some of them have welcomed new babies while we’ve been closed. Some babies have started walking and talking. Other families have preschoolers who have started school for the first time. Our staff has always shared in these family milestones with our families and we miss that engagement,” said Program Manager, Ailsa Stanners-Moroz. “And although we have worked hard to stay connected through phone calls, emails and virtual programs, we are thrilled to be getting some of that ability to interact back again, even if it is in a limited manner. 

She added, “But we are very aware of the level of vigilance and attention to detail that is required for our reopening and we take it very seriously.”

Once CPCC got word from the Ministry of Education and Peel Public Health that they were able to begin planning their reopening, staff and management dived deep into each protocol and each process and how they can safely reopen their locations. 

“Caledon families can’t wait to come back to the CPCC and begin enjoying our free programs and services again. And we can’t wait to see them and are working hard to that end,” said Sargent.



         

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