MAJOR EXPANSION FOR BELGRADE AVENUE COMMUNITY CENTRE

Monday, 31 August 2020

The Andrews Labor Government is repairing, expanding and building new kinders so every child can access Three-Year-Old kinder as the ground-breaking program rolls out across the state.

Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes announced that Wodonga City Council would receive $250,000 to expand the existing Belgrade Avenue Community Centre to be converted into an Early Years Centre ahead of the state-wide roll-out of funded Three-Year-Old Kinder in 2022. This project will deliver 66 three-year-old places, and 66 four-year-old places, and is estimated to be completed in mid-2021.

This project is part of 13 projects across Victoria that Minister for Education James Merlino announced will share in more than $13.8 million in first round of grants under the Building Blocks program. The funding will deliver an integrated children’s centre, three new early learning facilities, two modular buildings, and seven kindergarten expansions.

Together the projects will create new kinder places, as well as boosting local jobs and local businesses as these areas rebuild from the economic impacts of coronavirus.

The Building Blocks program creates additional places – well as improving facilities and access to technology – for Three and Four-Year-old Kinder providers across Victoria.

Grants are available to local governments and not-for-profit organisations delivering a funded kindergarten program.

This is part of the Labor Government’s $5 billion investment in funded universal Three-Year-Old Kinder for all Victorian children – in an Australian-first.

The reform has started in six regional local government areas in 2020, with families in a further 15 regional LGAs – including East Gippsland – to benefit in 2021.

As part of the roll-out, the Government is upgrading infrastructure through a $1.68 billion co-investment with the early childhood sector to build and expand kindergarten facilities across the state.

Applications for the Building Blocks capacity building stream are open year-round. To apply, visit schoolbuildings.vic.gov.au/buildingblocks.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino

“These projects will not only ensure these kinders are ready for the roll out of Three-Year-Old kinder – they will boost regional jobs and local businesses as we rebuild from the economic impacts of coronavirus.”

“We’re delivering unprecedented investment in early childhood services so our children can get the most out of great local kindergartens and set them up for the future.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes

“This project to convert the Belgrade Avenue Community Centre into an Early Years Hub will help to boost local jobs and businesses, and will help prepare Wodonga for the roll-out of Three-Year-Old Kinder in 2022.”