Money is on the way to prevent violence and help with healing in the Harbour City.
Nanaimo organizations will get more than $150,000 in grants as part of a B.C. Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General announcement Friday.
The province will give 170 programs and projects across B.C. nearly $6.5 million in one-time grants to help deal with issues like domestic violence and sexual exploitation, restorative justice and Indigenous healing from inter-generational trauma, a press release shows. The money comes from civil and criminal forfeiture proceeds.
“Sharing proceeds of crime back with communities, to prevent crime and victimization and help victims to become survivors, is one more way we’re enhancing the services that people count on,” said Mike Farnworth, minister of public safety and solicitor general, in a press release. “Many of this year’s grant recipients are working with some of our most vulnerable citizens, helping to rebuild and heal after years and, in some cases, lifetimes of violence.”
Tillicum Lelum Aboriginal Friendship Centre will see $55,000 for a program to prevent human trafficking and sexual exploitation of at-risk aboriginal girls and a project to help people heal, such as through pipe ceremonies, healing circles and brushing.
Grace Elliott-Nielsen, friendship centre executive director, said she’s very happy about grants.
“We are already doing some of that work, we didn’t have enough to spend more time with it and increase the area of knowledge for the youth that we’d like to and now we will be able to do that,” she said.
She also said the organization has seen cutbacks in a few areas, like federal funding for friendship centres, and it had been concerned about being able to continue on with healing.
Also poised to receive money is Kw’umut Lelum Child and Family Community Service Society’s Hope and Health at Home project, which will get $30,000. The program involves First Nations communities in kicking off a soccer curriculum for youths that targets root social issues and helps them develop life and leadership knowledge and skills, grant information shows.
Nanaimo Regional John Howard Society will get $27,760 for its Stop Taking it Out on your Partner program that offers counselling for perpetrators of domestic violence, and another $10,000 for a training program called Serving Victims of Crime through a Trauma-Informed Lens.
The Nanaimo Haven Society will get $30,000 for its domestic violence and sexual assault response program.
Since 2006, the Civil Forfeiture Office has provided more than $33.5 million to help organizations in B.C. with crime-prevention efforts.