Helping children in the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region


PHOTO BY CARMEN MARIE FABIO

(Left to right): Yvan Dumont, Christian Lamarre, Priscilla Bernier, Christine Bourassa, Monique Rozon-Rivest (President of the Board), Elaine Chignon, Sophie Boucher (Executive Director of the Foundation), Jasmine Sharma, Alain Belleville and Dominique Pilon.

The burgeoning growth of the Off Island comes with the usual necessities that accompany rapid population expansion including infrastructure, education and health care requirements – but as reflected in the increase in demand for funding and intervention, the Fondation des Enfants de Vaudreuil-Soulanges (FEVS) has seen a spike in the request for help from various initiatives to support childhood health and wellbeing.

“People think that parts of the region are rich and some parts are poor,” said FEVS Executive Director Sophie Boucher at the May 9 press conference held at the Boulevard de la Gare Restaurant Pacini location. “But poverty is a reality for both Anglophones and Francophones across the region.”

Created in 1994, the foundation has witnessed a steady growth for intervention and said there are currently 4000 young families living in vulnerable situations in the region, facing situations of poverty and hunger. The foundation supports programs like OLO (oeuf-lait-jus d’orange), prenatal and infant support programs, and helps in securing childcare and reintegration to work or school for parents. The foundation also offers a school bag lunch program.

In its efforts to best target its amassed funding to areas where it’s needed most, the FEVS is calling for the submission of proposals targeted specifically at helping vulnerable children up to age 12.

“The goal of the foundation is to finance projects to help youth escape the cycle of poverty and help them to succeed,” said Boucher. “We’re the only foundation in the region uniquely devoted to helping children.”

With a budget of $150,000, the foundation is seeking to raise its profile and is soliciting project ideas from individuals and organizations. Projects must include a specific description and objective, including location, duration, and necessary tools or equipment needed. The targeted clientele must also be specified. At least 10 per cent of the proposal’s budget must come from contributors external to the foundation.

The call for proposals will take place annually. Funding is provided by individuals and businesses in the region along with the Caisse Desjardins Vaudreuil-Soulanges, Vaudreuil MNA Marie-Claude Nichols and Soulanges MNA Lucie Charlebois.

Anyone interested in submitting a proposal must do so before August 12 at 4 p.m.

For more information, consult www.fevs.ca.

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