City monitoring changes to Children’s Services grants

NEWS RELEASE
November 13, 2019
For immediate release
 

City monitoring changes to Children’s Services grants

Cold Lake, AB – The City of Cold Lake has been advised of the provincial government’s intent to cancel grants and contracts with organizations that operate Parent Link Centres across the province and roll out a new service delivery model early next year.

The decision will affect the Cold Lake Parent Link Centre, operated by the City’s Cold Lake and District Family and Community Support Services. On Thursday, November 6, the government opened up expressions of interest so that organizations can bid on managing and providing children’s services under a new model that will be implemented after March 31, 2020. Cold Lake and District FCSS is working to understand the new service delivery model to see if it will enter a bid under the program.

“We have a tremendous amount of respect for the work that our FCSS and Parent Link Centres do,” Mayor Craig Copeland said. “Our community values these services and we will look at all opportunities available, understanding that the Government of Alberta may have new priorities for programs and services for children, youth and family.”

The Cold Lake Parent Link Centre had over 22,500 visits over the course of 2018 and hosted a wealth of programming geared towards providing families with a caring, safe place to play and learn together. It was funded through provincial Children’s Services grants that will not be renewed in their current form past March 31, 2020. The City of Cold Lake also provides additional funding to Cold Lake and District FCSS to maintain extended hours at the Parent Link Centre.

Children’s Services will be rolling out its new model to deliver services after its expression of interest process is complete. The full extent of any effect the new model may have on the current programming is being monitored by the City of Cold Lake’s administration.

“There are a lot of unknowns at the moment – including whether we ultimately want to submit a bid,” Mayor Copeland said. “We still need to learn exactly what the government’s new vision will look like to see if we can deliver the services they are looking for. With about 23 per cent of our population 14 and under, services for youth and children are very important to our community and we will support Cold Lake and District FCSS in its effort to understand the government’s new service delivery model and any changes it may bring.”

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Wednesday, November 13, 2019