INNISFAIL – The municipality is set to distribute $120,000 of Family & Community Support Services (FCSS) funds to the community in 2023 with a clear focus on wellness at local schools.
At Innisfail town council’s regular meeting on Jan. 23, Kristen MacKenzie, community and social services manager, requested that the distribution recommendations made by the FCSS Advisory Board on Jan. 5 be approved.
Council was presented with board-approved recommendations of funding from seven separate requests.
The total dollar value from the initial requests was $175,625, and then reduced by the board to $120,000.
The recommendations were unanimously approved by town council.
Council was told the Town of Innisfail has just entered into a three-year funding agreement from 2023 to 2025 that will see the municipality receive $207,592 in provincial funding annually, with a minimum required municipal contribution of $51,898.
The new deal is the same as the previous agreement, with part of the overall funding going to administration costs.
The largest funding request came from the Chinook’s Edge School Division Family School Wellness Program, which provides school-based early intervention for all Innisfail schools in the areas of social and emotional well-being, resilience, and mental health.
The initial request called for $65,000. The FCSS board agreed to $60,000.
Chinook’s Edge also requested an additional $30,000 for its Youth Empowerment and Support Program (YES), which provides social emotional learning programs to promote mental health and wellness through universal and targeted programs for all students from Kindergarten to Grade 8.
The FCSS board agreed to $20,000.
On behalf of St. Marguerite Bourgeoys Catholic School the Red Deer Catholic School Board requested funding of $12,300 for its BEAR (Blessing, Empathic, Ambassadors, Reliable) Project.
Council was told the funding will support administration and a counselling team in offering training opportunities, guest speakers and workshops in areas of social justice, empathy and trauma.
The FCSS board agreed to $12,000.
Outside of schools, the board agreed to give the Innisfail Seniors Drop-In Society $20,000 from its request of $50,100.
The funding will go towards wages for a program coordinator to provide ongoing programs and activities for older local adults that will support friendships, social development and healthy lifestyles.
The Henday Association for Lifelong Learning received $3,000 from a request of $3,600. The funding will support a nine-week Afternoon Cooks Program.
Innisfail & District Victim Services received $3,000 in funding for volunteer training opportunities for both new and current victim service advocates. The initial request was for $10,000.
The Innisfail Public Library received $2,000 in funding for its Connect and Learn initiative, which includes the Food for Life Program for youth and families, as well Life Skills 101.
The library was initially seeking a grant of $4,625.