Since 1977, the Regina Early Learning Centre (RELC) has been changing young lives and at the same time, created a community of care that makes the city a better place for everyone. Founder Anne Luke saw the need to help children and their families in the vitally important early years, and that making a difference at the very start changes lives forever. That founding idea and mission has driven the RELC for over 45 years, and it has had a tremendous impact on the lives of children and their families in Regina. Luke passed away last November, but her legacy and vision lives on daily at the RELC through its many programs and services.
“Anne recognized the disparity among young children in our community and wanted to ensure equal opportunity for all children,” says Monica Totton, executive director at RELC. “She empowered parents to have input in their child’s education through intentional and respectful collaboration and partnership.”
Collaboration, dignity and respect—these are the core values that drive the RELC and its programs. Parents are partners with the RELC team, and they work together to positively influence every child’s development and education. The RELC meets parents where they are with dignity and respect, acknowledging their cultures, providing needs-based support and building on every family’s existing strengths. “Anne knew that education was the key to changing the trajectory for young children and with family partnerships, we are better positioned to help children achieve lifelong success,” says Totton.
“Parents are the first teachers of children, so let’s give them all the support they need.” – Anne Luke, founder
Meridee Sayer can speak to the impact the RELC has on children and their parents. “I attended every program offered because I wanted to be a better parent,” says Sayer. “My second child was one of the first kids to be enrolled in the Parents as Teachers program, where I received home visits and learned the importance of being your child’s first teacher.” Sayer was so engaged with the programming that she wanted to give something back—and decided to make early learning her career. Sayer has worked at RELC as a home visitor and is now the manager of development. “I am so proud to say that every group I attended, I can now facilitate,” she says.
Where it matters most
The RELC has expanded its programs and services as the community’s needs grew, and today offers services throughout Regina for kids and families including the RELC preschool, the Early Years Family Resource Centre (EYFRC), the Regina Perinatal Health Network (RPHN), the KidsFirst home visiting program, the Triple P Positive Parenting Program, Family Outreach, and the Parents as Teachers program. “Our programs have grown a lot since 1977, and we’re proud of everything we accomplish with the children and their families,” says Totton. “We see firsthand that when families get the support they need, it changes lives for the better.”
“A child does not live in isolation, and it is the responsibility of parents and community to collectively support the basic rights of children to provide them with the greatest possible start. This is best achieved by providing their first and most important teachers, their parents, with the tools they need to lift themselves up and equalize opportunities for everyone. With community support this work is more sustainable and impactful.”
Be part of something special
The RELC’s mission is met through help from people like you, and they are always grateful for help to keep their lifechanging programs going. Every dollar the RELC raises supports the children and families that come through their doors every day. Donating is easy through the RELC’s website, and corporate donations and sponsorships are always welcome. “The RELC Preschool is the heart of our agency but lacks the most sustainable financial support,” says Totton. “Without donations, our work isn’t possible. When you give to the RELC, you’re helping children in our community establish the foundation for a love of learning and setting them on a path for lifelong success, and at the same time helping their parents become the best parents they can be. That is a powerful thing to be part of.”
Learn how RELC helps children and families at earlylearning.ca. For corporate donations and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Meridee Sayer, manager of development by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 306-520-2169.
Regina Early Learning Centre
2115 Athol Street
Facebook: Regina Early Learning Centre