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Lac La Biche organizations will receive county dollars to provide community support

Several organizations in need of financial top-ups in Lac La Biche County will receive additional funding this year from the municipality's $175,000 Community Development Grant Program.

LAC LA BICHE - Several organizations in need of financial top-ups in Lac La Biche County will receive additional funding this year from the municipality's $175,000 Community Development Grant Program. 

The program is intended to support organizations that provide vital social service needs in the county ranging from educational purposes all the way to supporting vulnerable people, in many capacities, said Carl Kurppa, the county’s Grants and Community Funding Coordinator. 

There were four local groups requesting funding in the most recent application process. Community Learning was received $45,000, the Lac La Biche Canadian Native Friendship Centre was approved for $53,433, Lakeland Out of the Elements Shelter Society got $55,407 in funding, and Hope Haven Society received $22,160. 

The funds approved to each group were slightly less than the original asks, said Kurppa. The initial requests totalled about $192,000, which was $17,000 more than the budgeted amount of the available grant funding. 

The $45,000 in funding for Lac La Biche’s Community Learning will go towards operational costs and supporting the organization's wraparound social and educational services. 

“The organization's core programming is adult learning. This includes courses related to reading, writing, document use, numeracy, computer use and oral communication,” the application stated. 

Additionally, funding will also be utilized to purchase books for the centre and the community, cover food program costs and support senior-related programs traditionally offered by the organization. 

“The primary activities focus around adult learning, community literacy, social support services, seniors support, and food security,” the group’s application read. 

Foodbank funds 

Lac La Biche Canadian Native Friendship Centre will put their $52,433 towards their Family Support Program which assists families with emergency food needs. 

Additionally, the group plans to work alongside other organizations, government agencies and community landlords to help struggling families by providing awareness, education and support. Staff and volunteer training will also be part of the funding needs. 

“The organization is a charitable non-profit society that is established to address existing gaps in the community. The organization provides access to social services, cultural programming, and information and referrals to other social service organizations,” according to the friendship centre’s application document  

Shelter staff wages 

The Lakeland Out of the Elements Shelter Society plans to utilize its funds for the overall operation of the shelter, but primarily to cover the cost of wages for staff who provide services for homeless individuals who utilize the shelter's six-beds and resources, according to the application. 

Family violence education funding 

Hope Haven Society will receive $22,160 to go towards their Family Violence Program which has three distinct groups and sessions to educate women and men about the dangers of family violence alongside preventative measures, the application stated. 

“The ‘New Perspectives Group’ is offered separately to both men and women. These are open groups that run once a week and include 12 sessions. These sessions discuss issues related to family violence and other maintaining healthy homes. The other group is the ‘Pathways to Change’ group, this is a closed 16-week group for women only and is more in-depth,” states the shelter’s application. 

Funding partnerships 

The municipal grant funding is just one part of the financial accounting for local groups. Part of the approval process for the grant funding is the work and effort from the applicant to raise funds through other means and to actively work on finding funding efficiencies.