Victoria is now home to BC’s first trauma-informed daycare, offering a first-of-its-kind refuge of support for children who have experienced trauma.

Little Phoenix Daycare on North Park Street has officially opened its doors, welcoming children through referrals from social service agencies, according to United Way Southern Vancouver Island (UWSVI).

The non-profit says the full-day daycare will help children aged 30 months to 5 years combat trauma, including family violence; sexual, psychological, physical and emotional abuse; or experience living in a refugee camp.

“Research indicates that with early intervention, the success rates of child recovery are much higher,” UWSVI said Friday.

UWSVI says Little Phoenix will serve children from Greater Victoria, including those not from trauma backgrounds, to integrate them and create an environment of acceptance and support.

“The attention to detail is extraordinary,” said Jane Taylor Lee, executive director at Family Services of Greater Victoria (FSGV).

“We have a team of professionals who are excited to welcome children from all backgrounds into the space and assist them in developing and achieving their true potential.”

In a partnership with the University of Victoria’s School of Child and Youth Care, the daycare will also help generate new knowledge about delivering a trauma-informed daycare program to be shared within the broader Canadian daycare system.

UWSVI says Little Phoenix is made possible thanks to FSGV and the Victoria Immigrant and Refugee Centre Society, as well as a $500,000 investment from the BC government.

From the very outset, UWSVI CEO Mark Breslauer adds that his team has been “huge supporters” of Little Phoenix, noting it “touches on so many of our values as an organization, from collaboration to supporting families.”

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