The Executive Director of the Native Friendship Centre in Quesnel says they were pleasantly surprised by this month’s provincial budget.
Tony Goulet says the announcement of 6 million dollars for friendship centres over three years was not expected but is desperately needed.
He says it is the first time that the Province has come forward to help them out…
“The fiendship centres are funded by the Federal Government. This is the firs time since I’ve been here and i have done some research in previous years, that the Provincial Government has given funding to the BC Association of Friendship Centres, because we’re usually funded by the Federal Government which um, they’ve been delayed and caused problems.”
Goulet says they’re not sure how much they’re getting as there are 25 friendship centres in the province.
He says they hope to expand programs…
“We can invest in different things and use that money in different ways is my understanding, and we’ll see what they’ll say if it has to be for specific programs. There is one specific program that we had here was a Program Coordinator which was funded, and then with all these downsizing and cuts and everything that happened, that position was eliminated. That person was the one who did proposals for us, got funding and did a lot of work that fell on the Executive Director myself, and the bookkeeper, to sort of do off the side of our desks.”
Goulet says it will be nice to get consistent and stable funding.