The Crèche de la Gare in the Brussels commune of Saint-Josse-ten-Noode is an important urban development which is making a vital contribution to social inclusion, employment and regeneration of the neighbourhood. It provides both crèche and nursery services, with places for 43 young children, and is aimed primarily at local inhabitants who are looking to get back onto the job market after starting a family. Total investment for the project “Crèche de la Gare” is EUR 2,7 million, of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund is contributing EUR 1,2 million from the Operational Programme “Brussels Capital Region”.
The building of the crèche involved the redevelopment of a site in a highly urbanised area of Brussels and a landscaped walkway is also under development alongside it. The building itself has been constructed in a modern energy-efficient architectural style which nonetheless combines perfectly with its surroundings, particularly the former Saint-Josse railway station, which is a listed building and is situated next door. The crèche occupies the ground and first floors, with the rest of the building taken up by apartments. The accommodation can cater for up to 34 children and is divided into two sections, while nursery facilities are available for up to nine children. A children's garden is also located at the site and is accessible from both the crèche and nursery sections of the building.
The crèche is available to provide guidance for young families from the earliest stages after giving birth. It also provides specific assistance related to both parenting and psychological issues. The facility gives help and information to young mothers looking at re-training with a view to obtaining new qualifications and it offers a range of assistance to help parents with young children to get back onto the job market. In addition, it can host consultations for families together with the Belgian national children's office.