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Health and Community Services
Tourism, Culture and Recreation
March 17, 2010

Several Community Groups to Benefit from Provincial Wellness Grants

The Williams Government is continuing its commitment to improve health and wellness in Newfoundland and Labrador by awarding 35 Provincial Wellness Grants to community groups throughout the province. The grants, which are a key component of the Provincial Wellness Strategy, total $579,750.

The Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services, today presented one of the grants to the Boys and Girls Club of St. John’s. Funding of $40,000 will support Blast Off to Wellness. The project is designed to engage children and youth in a wide range of physical activities and educational sessions, and to foster a positive environment in which children can grow into healthy adults.

“These grants reach out to all regions of the province and the projects being funded show a remarkable diversity in the size and scope,” said Minister Kennedy. “Fostering and improving wellness in Newfoundland and Labrador is a priority for this government, and we are committed to funding projects that achieve that goal.”

Proposals for Provincial Wellness Grants are assessed based on a number of criteria including, community involvement to improve well-being; developing skills and knowledge within the community; and building on existing strengths in the community.

“Regular physical activity is an integral component of overall wellness, so we are pleased to see support for several projects which are designed to increase activity levels amongst our citizens – particularly such under-represented groups as senior citizens, females, and Aboriginal groups,” said the Honourable Terry French, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Recreation. “These grants are consistent with the goals of the province’s recreation and sport strategy, Active, Healthy Newfoundland and Labrador, and provide further encouragement for our citizens to engage in healthier lifestyles.”

The aim of the Provincial Wellness Plan, launched in 2006, is to improve the overall health and wellness of the province’s population by focusing on health promotion and by strengthening community action towards wellness priorities. The wellness grants further the goal of the plan by focusing on projects that put an emphasis on healthy eating, physical activity, tobacco control and child and youth development, as well as a number of other wellness initiatives.

"It is very important that our youth understand the benefits of physical activity to their mental health and social well-being,” said the Honourable Shawn Skinner, MHA for St. John’s Centre. “I am pleased that the Boys and Girls Club of St. John’s has developed Blast off to Wellness. I believe this program will help address physical fitness needs through activities which will improve overall physical health but are also fun enough to keep the youth wanting to participate. Our government recognizes that healthy bodies and healthy minds lead to healthy societies."

Provincial Wellness Grants to be awarded this year range from $5,000 to $40,000 depending on the size and scope of the project. Over the last six years, 120 groups have received approximately $2.5 million through the Provincial Wellness Grants Program.

Complementary to these grants, the Provincial Government recently announced an investment of $247,000 to several community groups with a focus on food security issues. This is part of an annual investment of $4.1 million under the Provincial Wellness Plan.

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Media contacts:

Jennifer Tulk
Communications Manager
Department of Health and Community Services
709-729-1399, 699-6524
JenniferTulk@gov.nl.ca
Heather May
Director of Communications
Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation
709-729-0928, 697-5061
heathermay@gov.nl.ca

Veronica Hayden
Executive Assistant for
Honourable Shawn Skinner, MHA for St. John’s Centre
709-729-2568
vhayden@gov.nl.ca
 



BACKGROUNDER
Provincial Wellness Grants

Avalon Peninsula
Bay Bulls-Bauline Athletic Association
The Bay Bulls-Bauline Athletic Association received $20,500 to develop a recreation master plan for the region which will include hiring a consultant to conduct a recreational needs assessment. The association will also partner with St. Bernard’s School to pilot an after-school program and with the Community Youth Network to establish an after-school youth group for high school students. In addition, the project will offer opportunities for new physical activities and health training for 50 plus clubs in the region.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador
Big Brothers Big Sisters Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador received $15,000 to fund two initiatives. The first, Go Girls! Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds, will address the physical activity, balanced eating and positive self-image needs of young women ages 12-14. The second project, Boy Mentorship Program, comprises seven weekly sessions structured around physical activity, healthy eating, self-esteem and communication skills.

Boys and Girls Club of St. John’s
The Boys and Girls Club of St. John’s received $40,000 for Blast Off to Wellness. The project is designed to provide opportunities for all members and their families to enjoy a healthy lifestyle by engaging in a wide range of physical activity and participating in education sessions.

Carbonear Parks and Recreation
Carbonear Parks and Recreation received $32,750 to expand a project focused on senior’s development. The program will include nutritional education and food preparation bi-weekly for an eight month period.

Cavendish Youth Services Committee
The Cavendish Youth Services Committee received $5,000 for its CARE project – Cavendish Activities and Recreational Environment. The project will include Healthy Living Days which involve a variety of physical activities and a healthy snack.

Holyrood Town Council and Holy Cross Elementary
The Holyrood Town Council and Holy Cross Elementary received $9,500 for Healthy Bodies, Healthy Mind, Happy Community. The joint project will engage the community in physical activity challenges that will involve students as well as other members of the community such as parents, grandparents, siblings and neighbors. Healthy eating sessions will also be implemented. In addition, sessions will be held for adults and seniors on topics related to health, safety and social supports.

Seniors’ Resource Centre Association of Newfoundland and Labrador
The Seniors’ Resource Centre Association of Newfoundland and Labrador received $20,000 to fund a project that will provide older persons with knowledge and information about wellness. The target population will include approximately 7,500 persons, age 55 and older, in communities on the Baccalieu Trail.

Town of Conception Bay South
The Town of Conception Bay South received $22,000 for a recreation and leisure skills development program for youth. Youth will be provided with an opportunity to participate in activities they would not otherwise have access to because of cost or transportation. The program will correspond with the school year and include two registrations – one in the fall and the second in the winter.

Wabana Boys and Girls Club, Bell Island
The Wabana Boys and Girls Club received $22,000 towards the H.E.L.P program – Healthy, Educated and Living with Purpose. The project will involve a number of initiatives to improve the physical and emotional health of children and teens. Activities include, developing a teen mentor program; providing network opportunities by bringing families together for regular activities; and, working with schools and other health agencies to host a family health fair.

Whitbourne Sports and Recreation
Whitbourne Sports and Recreation received $12,000 to promote and organize recreational activities to include all ages. The present summer program will be expanded into a year round project that will promote a healthier sense of wellness through physical fitness and social gatherings with a focus on healthy eating and food preparation.

Burin Peninsula
Burin Peninsula Green Team
The Burin Peninsula Green Team received $10,000 to fund a project centered on environmental health. As part of the project a green team will be established with students from each school in the Burin Region, a green conference will be organized for the Burin Peninsula, and a greenhouse project will be initiated.

Point May Community Recreation Centre
The Point May Community Recreation Centre received $12,000 for a needs assessment to determine what type of wellness based programs will be most beneficial to the communities in the area. A number of the identified programs will then be implemented.

Smallwood Crescent Community Centre, Marystown
The Smallwood Crescent Community Centre in Marystown received $16,000 for Healthy Eating, Healthy World. The project will involve cooking sessions at the local community kitchen in order to promote healthy living with an emphasis on how to cook for a family on a budget. Information will also be shared about tobacco control, environmental health and physical activity.

Clarenville-Bonavista Peninsula
Cape Freels Development Association
The Cape Freels Development Association received $15,000 to provide healthy cooking classes to all residents from Greenspond to Deadmans Bay. The project will also increase public awareness regarding programs offered at the region’s exercise facility.

Trinity Historical Society
The Trinity Historical Society received $15,000 to hire a co-ordinator to identify indoor pastimes and outdoor activities that took place during the winter months in Trinity and surrounding areas. The society will then host afternoon, evening and weekend programs for youth and seniors incorporating the identified activities. In addition, a number of workshops and training sessions on healthy eating, senior abuse, injury prevention and other relevant topics will be offered.

Vista Family Resource Centre
The Vista Family Resource Centre received $18,000 for Snack Packs, a program that will bring together parents and children from five communities weekly to prepare healthy snacks and meals. Parents and children will have the opportunity to learn about Canada’s Food Guide; learn how to prepare nutritious foods for the family and nutritious snacks for recess; families will be provided with nutritious food to bring home; and parents and children will be provided with written information about nutrition.

Central Region
Aesirs Gymnastics Club, Glovertown
The Aesirs Gymnastics Club in Glovertown received $5,000 to provide a gymnastics program for children aged 4 to 18. The key objective of the program is to enhance both the social skills and physical development of the participants.

Bay d’Espoir Community Youth Network
The Bay d’Espoir Community Youth Network received $18,000 for Artistry in Motion which brings local artists and musicians into the community to teach a new skill or enhance the current skills of youth. The program will also focus on the value of a healthy lifestyle.

Central Regional Breastfeeding Promotion Committee
The Central Regional Breastfeeding Promotion Committee received $12,000 for Mothers Offering Mothers Support – MOMS. The project will provide peer support for breastfeeding mothers through the use of trained volunteers who have experience with breastfeeding.

Eastport Peninsula Recreation and Wellness Committee
The Eastport Peninsula Recreation and Wellness Committee received $5,000 to support Winter Wellness Week activities, including recreation and wellness programs, as well as educational workshops focusing on the Provincial Wellness Plan, Healthy Aging Strategy and the Recreation Sports Strategy.

Gambo Community Youth Centre
The Gambo Community Youth Centre received $20,000 to fund the Be Active…Stay Well for a Better Life program. A recreational co-ordinator will be hired to organize seminars and events all year round.

Gander Boys and Girls Club
The Gander Boys and Girls Club received $13,000 for a project that will raise awareness of the risks involved in everyday activities and provide injury prevention options through information sessions, presentations and workshops. Topics will include self defense, winter outdoor safety and Halloween safety.

Life Unlimited for Older Adults, Springdale
Life Unlimited for Older Adults in Springdale received $33,000 to support several programs including aquafit, men’s fitness, the mobile book service, seniors’ meal service and games night. These programs, along with those already in place, enable older adults to remain longer in their own homes by reducing isolation and increasing flexibility, balance and strength.

Western Region
Aboriginal Sport and Recreation Circle of Newfoundland and Labrador
The Aboriginal Sport and Recreation Circle of Newfoundland and Labrador received $30,000 for You Go…Girls’ and ‘Best BUDD’s, both eight week programs for girls and boys in five communities. Both programs promote culture, sport, recreation, physical activity, healthy living and healthy eating. The program also helps develop a sense of respect for self, others and the environment using leaders in the communities as role models.

Community Mental Health Initiative
The Community Mental Health Initiative received $28,000 to deliver a series of wellness workshops to adults, children and youth, beginning with women and youth at risk throughout the region. Workshops will include, mental health first-aid, suicide intervention, self-care, team building, assertiveness skills, violence awareness, employment skills and healthy relationships.

Roots of Empathy
Roots of Empathy received two grants valued at $10,000 each to implement a number of programs in the Corner Brook-Rocky Harbour and St. Anthony-Port au Choix regions. The core program is based on classroom visits from a neighbourhood infant and parent over the course of a full school year. Through this process students are taught to observe the baby’s development, celebrate milestones, interact with the baby and learn about the baby’s needs, thus developing a sense of empathy.

Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Jr. Police Academy
The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Jr. Police Academy received $5,000 to conduct a camp for children at risk within the Corner Brook area. The camp is structured to provide two days of planned activities with the third day provided for a graduation ceremony in which participants are presented with a Certificate of Achievement.

St. James All-Grade Wellness Committee, Lark Harbour
St. James All-Grade Wellness Committee received $7,000 for Life after High School. The project will teach high school students in Levels Two and Three to prepare healthier meals on a tight budget as well as circuit training for a full body workout and exercises to deal with stress.

The Western Environment Centre
The Western Environment Centre received $12,000 to support the hiring of a co-ordinator to help develop a sustainable community garden through the Growing Forward Program. The project will provide participants with fresh, healthy and affordable food as well as regular exercise and recreation through the community garden.

Labrador
Labrador Friendship Centre
The Labrador Friendship Centre received $15,000 to implement a number of workshops and information sessions on healthy eating, physical activity, mental health, child and youth development and environmental health to families.

Trappers Running Club
Trappers Running Club received $15,000 to help increase participation in running/walking activities and expand nutrition and injury prevention education to participants. The focus of the project will bring the Learn to Run program to Aboriginal communities of North West River, Sheshatshiu and will increase coastal Labrador participation in the 2010 Trapline Marathon.

Town Council of Charlottetown
The Town Council of Charlottetown received $13,000 for a project that will give elders in the community the opportunity to teach children and youth about making snowshoes and once complete, the children and youth will use them in a planned outing. The project will also help foster a sense of self-esteem using meaningful activities to connect seniors with children and youth.

Provincial Projects
Community Services Council
The Community Services Council received $18,000 for Age Well, Live Better – Volunteer! The project will consist of seniors’ forums to increase awareness regarding volunteer opportunities and the benefits of volunteering.

Easter Seals Newfoundland and Labrador
Easter Seals Newfoundland and Labrador received $26,000 to fund a project that will partner with all five school districts throughout the province to demonstrate how children and youth with physical disabilities can be included in gym class, Healthy Commotion days and school field trips. ‘Moving to Inclusion’ will also offer disability awareness training to school districts.

2010 03 17                                                 3:45 p.m.
 


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