A caregiver is more than a babysitter for your child. The caregiver will take part in some of your child's earliest development and education. Selecting your child’s caregiver is very important, and can be a very difficult decision indeed.

Childcare can be one of the largest costs of raising a child. According to the Vanier Institute of the Family, parents can expect to spend about $52,000 on childcare for their child (that's based on unsubsidized, licensed daycare, from age 0-11). So it often comes down to finding a balance between the optimal setting in which your child will spend five days a week — and what his/her parents can afford.

Childcare costs vary depending on the availability of extended family to care for children and the type of daycare facilities in the area. The need for childcare services will also differ if there is a parent at home, whether there's more than one child in childcare and if your family is eligible for any childcare subsidies.

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