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May 4, 1999
(Executive Council)

Funding available for Strategic Social Plan demonstration projects

Julie Bettney, Minister of Human Resources and Employment, announced today that government is now ready to accept proposals for funding of demonstration projects that support the Strategic Social Plan. A $1.2 million fund has been established for this purpose.

"Under this fund, province-wide demonstration projects that support the goals of prevention, early intervention and community capacity building will be initiated," said Minister Bettney. "Such projects will demonstrate innovative and more effective ways of addressing social issues in a coordinated fashion, by supporting community-based groups to undertake cooperative initiatives that address community concerns."

Government has created the $1.2 million special fund to implement projects that are consistent with the directions of the Strategic Social Plan, emphasizing coordinated approaches to social and economic development. Projects may be proposed at a community, region or provincial level. Funding can be extended to March 31, 2000 with project costs not normally exceeding $25,000. Consideration will be given to a higher award, if the project is province-wide in scope. Information gathered from these projects will be used to help improve programs and services, by testing new approaches, identifying best practices and enabling the use of more flexible ways of responding to issues.

The Strategic Social Plan acknowledges government's commitment to the importance of continuing to strengthen our social sector policies, programs and practices. It also emphasizes the importance of ensuring that appropriate linkages are made among government departments and between government and its community-based partners.

The minister said: "Government is committed to the Strategic Social Plan. Funding for these demonstration projects is tangible evidence of government's support for the plan, and its desire to work cooperatively with community groups to develop more flexible programming approaches."

Government has already made significant investments that are consistent with the new social policy direction: $2.5 million for implementation of the plan, including this fund; $10 million in early intervention and prevention programs for low-income families as part of the province's commitment to the National Child Benefit program; $7.5 million in employment programs for youth; and, $3.3 million to help children in schools with special needs and disabilities.

Application forms for Strategic Social Plan demonstration projects are available by calling (709) 729-0168, or by accessing the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador website at

Media contact: Lynette Oates, Communications, (709) 729-4023.

1999 05 04                                        4:50 p.m.

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