Local agencies get grant to help reduce poverty

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Communities throughout Nova Scotia, including Pictou County, will receive funding to support those living in or facing poverty.

Pictou County Roots for Youth Society has received $27,746 for the Homeless No More project, from the Building Vibrant Communities grant program that helps community-based organizations develop innovative approaches and build their capacity as government works to reduce poverty in the province. Other local initiatives receiving funding include: Riverview Home Corporation, Riverview Greenhouse, $4,146.; Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia; The John Howard Society of Nova Scotia, Employment Search Support, $4,950 and The Bright Smiles Project, $10,000.

A total of 40 projects across the province will receive a total investment of almost $1 million to implement poverty-reduction projects.  The focus will be on children, families and activities that promote strong mental health, increase self-confidence, self-awareness and pride.

“Our goal is to provide a sense of community for Aboriginal families who do not live in a First Nations community, are traditionally marginalized, and have few opportunities to come together as a result,” said Cathy MacDonald, project organizer.

“All Nova Scotians deserve a chance to build a better life for themselves and their families,” said Kelly Regan, minister of Community Services. “In the second year of the Building Vibrant Communities grants, we’re continuing to build a stronger Nova Scotia, where everyone can grow and be successful.”

To be eligible, projects needed to align with one of the four themes chosen for the second year of the grants:

— children

— housing

— mental health and addictions

— economic inclusion (employment)

“I applaud these community organizations who are the driving force behind these projects, and are showing leadership in developing new and innovative approaches to address social issues and build stronger communities,” said Communities, Culture and Heritage minister Leo Glavine. “Community organizations play a key role in supporting people living in poverty and protecting those who are at risk to help ensure every Nova Scotian has a chance for a more secure future.”

The grant program is part of government’s commitment to reduce poverty. Twenty million dollars will be invested over four years to support actions from all levels of government and communities to work collaboratively to help reduce poverty in Nova Scotia.