First time visiting your neighbourhood Best Start Hub?


Things you may want to know before you go…

Best Start Hubs are free family centres located in schools, offering families in Greater Sudbury a place to meet, to learn, and to grow together.

1. Do I need to call ahead and register for a Hub?

No! You are welcome to show up to any drop-in program. At the Hub they will ask you to register and give you a card so you can sign you and your child(ren) in for safety purposes. You only need to register in advance for special programs that have limited spaces. It will tell you on the calendar if registration is required.

2. What ages do Best Start Hubs serve?

Hub programming is designed for children from birth to 12 years old and their parents or caregivers. Playgroup or drop-in times are good for any age- even pregnant moms who want to learn from other parents or ask questions. Some Hub programs are designed for specific ages. For example, Baby's Day Out is for babies up to 12 or 18 months, depending on the Hub.

3. What does a Hub cost?

Nothing! It's a free service.

4. What should I bring to the Hub?

Pack a bag the same you would if you were going to the mall for a few hours. Bring comfortable indoor shoes for you and your child, if they are walking. A healthy snack is usually provided.  If your child has special dietary needs feel free to bring your own nut free snacks.

5.  How do I find the Hub?

Hubs are located in schools throughout Greater Sudbury. Addresses are listed here. Once you find the school it can be tricky to make your way to the Hub the first time. All schools are locked during the school day so you need to 'buzz' in from outside.  There are signs directing you to the door with the buzzer, and to the Hub once you enter the school. If you're not sure you can ask the staff when you buzz in if they can come and meet you.  If you have a stroller with you, ask the staff where you should leave it while you are in the Hub.

At your first visit a staff member will show you around and have you fill out a registration. They will give you a card or registration number so you can sign in on later visits. This helps to make sure the Hub staff knows who is there and lets them keep track of how many people are attending their programs.

6. I don’t have a car. Can I get some help getting to a Hub?

If your nearest Best Start Hub is not in walking distance to your house, you may be able to use Sudbury Transit to visit your Hub. Information about Bus Routes serving each Hub is provided on the Best Start website at sudburybeststart.ca/hubs.

If money is tight and paying for the bus is a barrier to you attending Hub programs, call your neighbourhood Hub and ask if they provide bus tickets to help. Many Hubs have a limited number of bus tickets that they can provide to families who need them.

7. What goes on at a Hub?

Hubs are set up much like preschool play rooms. Feel free to sit down with your child and other families and play. There are a variety of learning centres, toys, equipment and activities to appeal every level of child development.

During “playgroup” or “drop-in” times children are free to participate in whichever activities they choose. There may be some time set aside for the adults and children to gather together to participate in staff-run activities (anything from parenting discussions to sing-a-longs). 

You are welcome to stay for the entire playgroup or drop in time, or come and go as you wish. Hubs also offer more structured programs in the Hub or in other community locations, which sometimes require  that families sign up in advance. Check the Hub’s calendar for events and activities coming up.

Hubs offer a great opportunity for children to interact with other children, but also for families to meet and get involved in the community. Hub staff members come from early childhood and social service backgrounds, among others, and have lots of training and experience. They are there to answer your questions about child development, community services and parenting.

Each Hub has its own personality and provides different services to respond to the needs in the neighbourhood. You are welcome to check out more than one Hub and choose the one that suits you and your child!

8. How can I find out the schedule at my Hub?

All Best Start Hubs post their activities, along with many other events for families, on the sudburyfamilies.ca/calendar. If you want to see just the activities offered at one Hub, go to sudburyfamilies.ca/hubs and click on the Hub you are interested in. You'll find a link for that Hub's activities on their page.

When you visit the Hub, you can also ask if that Hub has a printed calendar you can take home or an email list or a facebook page or group that you can join.

9.  Who is in charge of Best Start Hubs? And where does their funding come from?

Each Best Start Hub is run by one of five local, non-profit community organizations.  Hubs are funded, fully or in part, by the City of Greater Sudbury with funding provided by the Government of Ontario.

In some communities, there are similar programs called Ontario Early Years Centres or Family Resource Programs. Hubs also get support from, and work in partnership with, other agencies like school boards, the Sudbury District Health Unit, Greater Sudbury Public Library and others. Hubs can refer families to many other services if needed- like Wordplay Preschool Speech and Language Services, Child and Community Resources, or the Children's Community Network- for screening, assessment or programming.

10.  Why are there French Hubs, English Hubs and an Aboriginal Hub, instead of keeping everyone together?

The early years are critical for children's language and cultural development and having more specialized environments is really helpful for the development of strong language skills and cultural connection in young children. Families are welcome to choose whichever environment best meets their family's needs.

The staff at Francophone Hubs encourages families who are getting their children ready to attend French language schools (not French Immersion) to attend their Hubs. They are committed to supporting families who are learning French but ask that parents help them to maintain the Francophone environment by keeping English to a minimum.

The Aboriginal Hub is open to everyone who is interested in learning about First Nations and Metis culture.

11.  Who do I talk to if I have a concern about a Hub?

If you have a question or concern about the Hub you attend, talk to the staff at the Hub or ask to talk to a manager or director at the agency that operates the Hub. If you have a concern that you feel has not been resolved by the staff or manager at the agency, you are welcome to talk to the Quality Team in the Children Services Section, City of Greater Sudbury. Call 3-1-1 and you will be directed to one of the City's Quality Coordinators. 

12. What are benefits of attending Best Start Hubs?

Every parent or caregiver has their own reason for attending Hubs, but the ones we hear the most are:

- To help their children develop, make friends and get ready for school
- To give the parent/caregiver a chance to get out and meet other parents
- To learn about their child's development, and make sure they are on track
- To give their children access to new toys, equipment and experiences they may not have at home
- To ask questions and get support from trained staff, and other parents
- To learn more about other programs and resources
- To have fun with their child!

If you have any more questions please call the Hub in your neighbourhood, or go to sudburybeststart.ca/askus


Hub Contact Info

Aboriginal Hub                        
Aboriginal Hub, 350 Jean Street, 705-688-1941
 

English Hubs                             
Chelmsford Hub, 26 Charlotte Street, 705-855-2334
Copper Cliff Hub, 50 School Street, 705-682-9619   
Donovan Hub, 185 Lansdowne St., 705-586-7100    
Garson Hub, 45 Spruce Street, 705-693-5575
Hanmer Hub, 4625 Carl Street, 705-969-4040
Minnow Lake Hub, 44 Third Avenue, 705-525-7707 
New Sudbury Hub, 1722 Fielding Street, 705-222-9683          
South Central Hub, 23 Walford Road, 705-523-0482
South End Hub, 2650 Algonquin Road, 705-523-0586
West End Hub, 691 Lilac Street, 705-671-3199
 

Francophone Hubs                 
Carrefour centre-ville, 300, Van Horne St., 705-673-0131
Carrefour Chelmsford, 3634 Errington St, 705-855-2219         
Carrefour Hanmer,  4503 Dennie St., 705-969-8888
Carrefour nouveau-Sudbury, 691 Lasalle Blvd, 705-566-4135

See you at the Hub!