From CanStar Community News–More than a year after Kookum’s House arrived in the North End, the child-care operation is launching a second location in the community.
Blue Thunderbird Family Care opened Kookum’s (Granny’s) House as a one-year pilot project in February 2020.
Josie Hill is the executive director of Blue Thunderbird Family Care, which oversees Kookum’s House.
The project received $400,000 from the Province of Manitoba last year. On April 16, 2021, the government announced additional funding of $810,000 to extend the existing project another year and to add a second site in the North End, which was approved for one year.
Families use Kookum’s House for temporary respite. Caregivers can drop off their kids to be cared for while they run errands, work, or simply catch their breath. The house is open 24-7.
Last year, Kookum’s House provided care to approximately 35 unique families, including 83 children.
“Parents never had this kind of respite before Granny’s House opened,” said Josie Hill, the executive director of Blue Thunderbird Family Care.
Having flexible, non-judgemental and affordable care available to families has potentially prevented some kids from entering the child welfare system, she added.
“This kind of program keeps families together (and) prevents children from coming into formal systems, because there’s somebody there that can give (parents) that break.”