There has never been a better time to start a childcare business, whether it is from home or elsewhere.

Kootenay Employment Services has teamed up with WorkBC in East Kootenay to offer a specialized self-employment program focused specifically on opening a home-based or facility-based childcare business with the help of the Blossom and Bud childcare team

Inquire Here

Enter your details and a member of staff will be in touch shortly, or you can speak to us via our live chat.

Lack of childcare across the Kootenays has become a crisis for many communities.

With many parents unable to access licenced childcare, Kootenay Employment Services is partnering with WorkBC to trial a pilot program for anyone who wants to open their own childcare space.

This program is a supported and tailored opportunity to assist you in creating a viable business within your community.

With support from Kootenay Employment Services own childcare facility Blossom and Bud, you’ll gain access to specialized workshops; additional workshops will be provided by various community partners, institutions and colleges.

How do we help get you started?

This pilot program provides the certifications and information to plan and start offering childcare services.

Assess Eligibility for Funded
Self-Employment Programs

We qualify and assess your eligibility for financial support, to assist with household expenses or business costs to assist you on your journey.

Workshops Specific to
the Childcare Industry

With access to dedicated workshops and training programs made for the childcare industry, you’ll gain knowledge and confidence in the field.

Business Support
& Guidance

You won’t be on your own with business coaching
to guide and assist you within your first year of business.

Access to Childcare Industry
Specific Grants

Providing assisted access and application to grants like the “BC Start-Up Grant” that supports new businesses in B.C. communities.


1595 children are without
available childcare spaces*

At present, in Cranbrook, there are:
• Only 288 licensed childcare spaces to meet the needs of 975 children under the age of 4.

• Only 125 licensed spaces for 1105 school-aged children between ages 5-9, leaving 908 children without after-school care.


364 new spaces are needed*

At present, in Creston, there are only 12 spaces for children under 3 years old. There are 180 children under the age of 4 (Census 2016). This means that approximately 8% of the children needing care will get a spot. Less than 8% of our families with young children will be able to enter the workforce.

Elkford & Sparwood

176 new spaces are needed*

At the time of the Early Years Story report created in 2019,
there were only 85 childcare spots for 435 children.

Columbia Valley

182 new spaces are needed*


278 new spaces are needed*


329 new spaces are needed*

At present in Fernie, while there were 51 new spaces opened in 2021
with the assistance of provincial government funding, there is a
continued need for licensed spaces, especially for children under
3 years of age.

Meet Your Support Team

This team of qualified individuals and industry experts is here to assist you on your journey.

Inquire Here

Enter your details and a member of staff will be in touch shortly, or you can speak to us via our live chat.

  • Minimum 19 years of age

  • Resident of BC

  • Desire to provide childcare

  • Criminal Record Check

In partnership with