CRC funding restored

The Community Resource Centre (CRC) is back, the group announced this month.

After its gaming grant funding was declined last year, the CRC had to place many of its services on hiatus while it appealed the decision.

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In response to that loss of funding, the CRC teamed up with the Sunshine Coast Community Services Society (SCCSS) in order to manage some of its existing programs.

"Because of the similarity in values, this was an excellent fit," said Sandy McBride, chair of the CRC board. "The CRC could benefit from the infrastructure at (SCCSS), reducing the cost of offering services and programs."

According to McBride, the memorandum of understanding between SCCSS and the CRC has created a "safety net" for yearly gaming grants, and the CRC is hopeful that funding will continue into the future.

Some of the programming residents can expect includes first-aid training and the Home Alone Program, which is funded by traffic fine revenues through the District of Sechelt.

Sunshine Coast RCMP, paramedics and volunteer firefighters assist in delivering this program and giving youth the information they need to stay safe when adults are away.

Community partnerships are at the centre of much of the CRC's activities. A financial skills literacy program is being offered later this month that is the result of co-operation with the Sunshine Coast Credit Union.

While the lack of specificity regarding a target group or demographic for its services may have been a reason the CRC's funding was originally declined, McBride said community-based synergy may protect it.

"The CRC has always been a well-used 'community living-room' where Sunshine Coast residents come to discuss their issues and formulate solutions in a relaxed, non-threatening atmosphere," McBride said.

As executive director of SCCSS, Vicki Dobbyn said she was familiar with the challenges of applying for yearly grant funding.

SCCSS has been able to offer some of its resources including a payroll department, facility access and existing community partnerships.

"In a sense we're providing that kind of essentialized core infrastructure," Dobbyn said. "We've partnered on all the grant applications we really think that strengthens them because funders are looking for community partnerships."

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