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The United Way of Sarnia-Lambton has committed to increase funding of direct services to the residents of North Lambton to a total of $30,000 per year for four years beginning April 1, 2012 to meet the increasing needs of the North Lambton area.
This amount is an increase over the current funding of $21,765 which is being provided to the North Lambton Social Services Centre, Single Point Access program until March 31, 2011.
United Way funding will be invested into direct programs and services rather than to a second level of administration beginning April 1, 2012. In addition, the United Way is committed to fund effective spring 2012, a CNIB program geared to help children who are site impaired or blind with training assistance.
After reviewing all the Requests for Funding proposals, the United Way has made the decision to fund two programs for a period of 4 years and an additional Venture Grant program for 1 year.
“There were excellent programs requesting funds to service the North Lambton community”, said Pam Gallant, United Way Community Investment Chair. “I am pleased to announce that we will now be investing $40,000 into the North Lambton community, which is $10,000 greater that the originally earmarked $30,000 due to the funding of a Venture Grant in the community as well”, she said.
The first program to be funded is the Homeward Bound program which will be provided by the Canadian Red Cross for clients living in the North Lambton community.
This program targets seniors, and others who require assistance to be safely discharged back to their home from acute care and emergency departments, due to a lack of or limited availability of supports, resources, family and/or transportation. Red Cross will supply the transportation as well as a Transitional Support Staff to help settle the client back into their home.
They will also provide two days of breakfast, lunch, and dinner (total 6 frozen meals) and perform errands such as pharmacy prescriptions, health care equipment pickup, and groceries as needed. The Transitional Support Staff is available to the client for a total of seven hours. Five clients per month living in the surrounding territory of the North Lambton Community Health Centre will be assisted thru the Homeward Bound program.
The United Way has committed $15,000 per year, beginning April 1, 2012 for a total of four years to this program.
The second program to be funded is Transportation Services, which will also be provided by the Canadian Red Cross. The program will provide transportation (by trained volunteer drivers) to North Lambton area seniors and the disabled who feel socially isolated and have limited resources.
Individuals who access the service will be provided with transportation to medical appointments, grocery stores, social events and access to food banks. The Red Cross will have an accessible van which will be stationed (free of charge) at the North Lambton Community Health Centre for use by the residents in need in the North Lambton community. The United Way has committed $15,000 per year, beginning April 1, 2012 for a total of four years to this program.
Harold Marshall is a regular client of the Red Cross transportation service in Sarnia. Marshall suffers from arthritis and uses this service on a regular basis for transportation to medical appointments, both local and out of town. He also uses the service for trips to the grocery store and gym. “Without this service I would be much more restricted and isolated than I am now. My trips to the gym have helped me to avoid surgeries that otherwise I would need if I was unable to keep my joints as limber as possible,” he stated.
In addition to the above two programs, a Venture Grant was also awarded to the CNIB who will provide an Active Learning program in Forest. This program is designed for and reaches learners with significant disabilities who have a developmental age of 4 or under. It will serve children with low vision/partially sighted or blind.
Some children may have additional exceptionalities such as; cerebral palsy, hydrocephalus, acquired brain injury, developmental delay, or deaf-blindness. Active Learning will run as six week sessions (2 hours per week) at the Early Year’s Centre in Forest, twice per year – spring and fall.
By participating in the group, families will be in a better position to determine how their child is able to best learn and develop in order to achieve the developmental milestones and prepare them for their futures, including entering the school system prepared to learn. The United Way has committed $10,000 to this program for 1 year, and may be extended for an additional three years.
All United Way funded programs and services need to address goals under the three Community Impact areas; Healthy, Safe and Independent Seniors; Empowering and Strengthening Self Sustaining Families; and Supporting Youth At Risk to Achieve Positive, Personal Development. United Way has and continues to focus its funding on Prevention and Early Intervention services.
“With these programs, we will now be able to provide more measurable direct services to residents of North Lambton in the populations most in need,” said Gallant.
Kathy Bresett, Executive Director of the North Lambton Community Health Centre says, “The North Lambton Community Health Centre will continue to support United Way funded agencies offering direct service to the North Lambton area to enhance active community participation by providing accessible services where residents are supported and valued.
"Our partnership vision includes the strengthening of individuals, families and community through a collaborative approach respecting diversity and the assets of all agencies, participants and volunteers and the broader community. We appreciate the past investments of the United Way to our community and look forward to the increase funding commitments made by the United Way to ensure that equity to services and inclusiveness are delivered to North Lambton residents.”