Working in ECEC

Karen Wright

Karen Wright: Supported Child Care Worker, North End Day Care, Halifax, Nova Scotia; Coordinator, Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ Summer Camp

Karen Wright credits working in child care with “stopping my aging process.”

“You are energized when you come in every day. I can think of no other job like this one in terms of the energy that’s created and how things change from minute to minute every day.”

Wright is a supported child care worker who works with children with special needs, primarily in the school age program, where she spends almost half her day.

When staff at the centre identify an issue they are seeing in a child, Wright will do an observation and some research. If she feels an assessment is needed, she then contacts the Progress Centre for Early Intervention. Throughout the process, she works with the child’s parents.

Wright also coordinates the Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ (CUPW) summer camp, which offers flexible hours of service. The program is primarily for children aged 6-12 and gives priority to CUPW parents, but also takes children from the community.

Wright has been at North End since 1984. She substituted at the centre in the summer after finishing her second year at Mount Saint Vincent University in child and youth studies. The centre offered her a permanent job and she’s been there every since. Over the years, she earned her four-year degree in child and youth studies. She’s also taken a number of workshops related to her job.

She says she prefers working with school age children because there is so much variety in every day. “That’s the age children start learning humour and that development of language and humour appeals to me. And the children are very vocal and very physical.”

The most challenging aspect of her job is being “happy and upbeat coming to work every day. You can’t come in taking other issues with you, but I thoroughly love my job.”