The old Oak High School property on Banks Road in Duncan has been bought up by the Clements Centre Society. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)

Sundrops Centre for Child Development to move to former Island Oak school site

The Sundrops Centre for Child Development is moving from the Clements Centre into a bigger space of its own at the former Island Oak High School location at 5814 Banks Rd.

The Waldorf-style school closed its doors following the end of the 2017 school year. Clements Centre Society executive director Dominic Rockall said the new space was a pretty good fit for Sundrops.

“We have to do a ton of work up there,” he admitted. “But the building that we’re in, we’ve basically grown out of our space here. I started here five years ago and it was crowded at that point.”

The work space at the current office on Clements Street is packed to the brim, but what’s more important is that it is not as easily accessible as staff and clients want, and need, it to be.

“It’s on the second floor which is not good because we are a child development centre that provides services for children with special needs who often have mobility issues,” he said. “We can have an elevator but it’s a little cumbersome. Ideally we want to be on one floor.”

The move to Banks Road offers that opportunity.

There’ll be space to meet with families, to have family group meetings and therapy sessions.

“All of it is not sufficient where we currently are,” Rockall said. “We’re going to be renovating and our intention is to build a child development centre, a place for families to support families of children, that the community can be proud of.”

One program is moving on Feb. 1, Rockall said.

“We’re not doing much before then, just some cosmetic renovations to allow our after school program to operate from there,” he said.

Substantial renovations will have to happen before moving the rest of the Sundrops programs to the new location.

A capital campaign is on the horizon.

“My hope is that we can make everybody aware of that,” Rockall said.

The Sundrops Centre for Child Development is a not-for-profit charity that supports children and their families by connecting them with child care providers, by providing life skills activities for young people with disabilities and by connecting families with resources for children from birth to five years who may benefit from speech or physical therapy, or other interventions.

Learn more at www.clementscentre.org

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