Family Ties: Child care, Lego, chess and more

Every parent knows how hard it can be to find child care –especially if you don’t need it on a full-time basis.

Burnaby Family Life is offering up a new occasional child-care service, and parents are invited to drop in any Friday in February to check it out.

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The McKercher Occasional Child Care centre will offer flexible hourly child care for kids aged 18 months to five years, with spots available on a first-come, first-served basis (up to 40 hours per month per child).

It runs Fridays 12:30 to 9 p.m. and Saturdays 8:30 to 6 p.m., and the service will start March 4.

In the meantime, you can check it out by dropping in to 6140 McKercher Ave on Fridays in February (Feb. 19 and 26) anytime between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

See for more details.



Lego lovers, unite

Got a little Lego lover in the house?

Kids aged five to 12 are invited out to take part in a Pro-D Day Lego Club at the Metrotown branch of Burnaby Public Library, this Friday (Feb. 19) from 1 to 3 p.m.

Moms and dads can join in the fun, too – you can all get your hands on the library’s extensive Lego collection and build to your hearts’ content.

No registration is needed, but drop in early since space is limited. Adults must accompany kids under 10.

The library is at 6100 Willingdon Ave. Check out for details.


Chess club for kids

Whether your son or daughter is the next Bobby Fischer or whether they’re just learning to play chess, here’s one they may enjoy.

Kids aged six to 12 are invited to join in the Kids’ Chess Club at the Metrotown branch of Burnaby Public Library.

Informal chess games are facilitated by Curtis Lister of the Burnaby Junior Chess Club. It’s a drop-in program, and no registration is needed, but space is limited.

The next club session is Saturday, Feb. 20 from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at the library, 6100 Willingdon Ave.

Check out for details.



Neighbourhood family drop-in

Looking for places to take your small people on these rainy winter days?

Burnaby Neighbourhood House is offering a weekly family drop-in program on Tuesdays at its North Burnaby home at 4463 Hastings St.

The drop-ins run from 10 a.m. to noon. They’re designed for families with kids up to age five to socialize and have fun in a safe and educational environment. A family outreach worker is on site to provide parents with referrals and information as needed.

Check out for all the details.


Help your child's social emotional skills

Here’s a great one for any parents out there who may be looking for ways to boost their child’s educational experience.

The Burnaby district parent advisory council is hosting a parent information evening on Wednesday, Feb. 24 called Taking Social Emotional Learning Home.

Suzanne Vardy will lead the presentation, which is set to start at 7 p.m. at Burnaby Central Secondary School.

The evening will look at what parents already do and what they can do to encourage social emotional skills with their children at home. It will look at ways to build on what parents already do and offering up parental resources, such as websites and blogs.

Check out for more information or to register.


Supporting single moms

Are you a single mother? Do you know a single mom who could use a little extra support?

Burnaby Family Life is offering an ongoing support group for single mothers, giving single moms a chance to meet each other, connect with resources and share their stories. The group meets Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., and child care is available.

It’s at Burnaby Neighbourhood House, 4460 Beresford St., on the third floor. To register, call Jenn Bateman at 604-619-5276.



Do you have an item for Family Ties? Send family and parenting-related information to Julie,, or find her on Twitter, @juliemaclellan.

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