Eligibility Criteria

ECE Professional Development Bursary Fund

Eligibility and Funding Guidelines

Background Information

Westcoast Child Care Family Centres (Westcoast), formerly known as Westcoast Childcare Resource Centre is administering Phase 3 of The ECE Professional Development Bursary Fund until March 31, 2027. This funding is part of the Early Learning and Child Care Agreement with the Government of Canada. Funds will be distributed to charitable not-for-profit agencies who support the ongoing training needs of early childhood educators and child care providers in communities across British Columbia. This funding is available for ongoing professional development after certification or licensing. This funding is not for entry-to-practice training or pre-service certification programs. Bursary funded professional learning experiences must be available to any child care professional in the community.

The learning format may be online or face-to-face and structured as a:


  • community of practice
  • conference
  • networking event
  • retreat
  • workshop
  • on-site professional development support
  • format that suits of the distinct needs of the child care professionals in your community


Who is eligible to apply for bursary funds?

Non-profit, registered charitable agencies in British Columbia are eligible to request funding to provide professional development (outside of their regular programming) for any child care professional in their community. This includes those working in British Columbia in the following roles:

  • Early childhood educator
  • Early childhood educator assistant
  • School-age child care provider
  • Licensed family child care provider
  • Registered license-not-required child care provider
  • Care providers who have completed the Responsible Adult course
  • Head Start of Strong Start educator
  • Child development professional


What types of professional development are eligible for bursary funding?

Non-profit charitable agencies that plan to offer a community of practice, conference, course or workshop relevant to the early learning and child care field. Topics may include:

Professional development must be offered by a facilitator and/or trainer who has the necessary or recognized background and experience to deliver the content.


What types of professional development are not eligible for funding?
Professional development that is not eligible for funding:

  • Training related to basic requirements (e.g., First Aid, Food Safe) or the basic training for starting and managing a child care business
  • University or college courses for certification or specialization
  • Training outside of British Columbia
  • Training already financially supported by other Provincial and/or Federal funding programs
What training expenses are eligible for bursary support?

Agencies may use bursary funds to reduce the following costs:

  • Reduced Registration fees
  • Resources for participants
  • Speaker/Facilitation costs
  • Catering costs
  • Facility rentals
  • Personal child care: (maximum of $100.00 per day)
  • Travel and accommodations for participants – Travel and accommodation costs are prioritized for those who are living in rural or remote areas of the province, for whom travel costs represent a significant barrier to accessing professional development opportunities.
How will I know my agency’s application is approved?

If your agency’s application meets the eligibility criteria and you have filled in the application form and sufficient funds remaining in the Bursary Fund your agency will receive an email confirming the approval of the application. If we need clarification about the application, we will contact you by email or phone.

How will my agency receive the bursary funds?

Funds will be transferred electronically to the agency after a confirmation letter or memorandum of understanding is finalized. Arrangements will be made if alternative methods of payment delivery are necessary.

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