BHP and Wanslea have entered a long-term partnership to provide high quality, affordable childcare for families in regional Western Australia.
Through the partnership, BHP will continue to support family day care services in the Pilbara, which is home to many of its Western Australia Iron Ore employees and their families. The company will also make several of its houses available for the initiative, with the aim of encouraging local Family Day Care Educators to become family day care providers.
A grants program will see the educators fit out their homes with appropriate equipment to start family day care services. They will also receive ongoing training and professional development opportunities.
BHP Asset President Western Australia Iron Ore, Brandon Craig, said the partnership would help alleviate the critical shortage of childcare services in the Pilbara.
“We’re really pleased to partner with Wanslea and build on our work to improve childcare in our communities – we hope this will make a big difference to families in regional towns like Newman and Port Hedland who are currently waiting up to two years for childcare placements.”
“By supporting the partnership we’re also aiming to break down the barriers that limited childcare has on attracting and retaining workers and achieving our goal of a gender-balanced workforce in the next few years.”
Wanslea CEO Jo Sadler said: “Wanslea is so excited to be joining forces with BHP in the Pilbara, to help children and families in the local community access early learning services. Wanslea supports children and young people to grow and develop safely and we very much look forward to assisting families in the Pilbara through our provision of quality Family Day Care services.”
Wanslea will support the Family Day Care Educators and oversee the running and management of each service provider.
BHP’s social investment in the Pilbara has exceeded $40 million per year over the past two years.