Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) is based on a preventative approach to promote social wellbeing in communities throughout Alberta. FCSS seeks to empower its’ communities local decision making and encourages community development. Essentially, FCSS provides two major services:
1) Grants for local Not-for-Profit Societies 2) Social programming for the community (1).
The FCSS program is unique to Alberta. It officially began in 1981. Today, there are over 200 FCSS programs serving 300 communities and Metis Settlements (2). Two of these programs can be found in the Tri-Council Region, one is located in the Town of Slave Lake and the other in the MD 124 Lesser Slave River. The FCSS program in the Municipality of Lesser Slave River (MD 124) is situated at the MD 124 office in Flatbush and the dedicated person you need to ask for regarding all FCSS inquiries is Peggy Laing. It’s time for you to get to know Peggy!
About the lady coordinating the MD 124 FCSS program:
Saying that Peggy knows her region well is a major understatement! She has been an MD 124 employee for the past 18 years. Her role has evolved into being the go to person for FCSS in the region. Peggy explains “I’m a homegrown resident of Flatbush and have lived here my entire life”. She emphasized how volunteering is a part of her everyday lifestyle, “Some people knit, some people crochet, I volunteer”. Laing is extremely well versed regarding the reality of regional organizations day-to-day and the services they offer. Ultimately, Peggy wants to see small rural communities succeed by doing everything possible to keep communities strong and vibrant.
Peggy currently dedicates a handful of hours weekly to FCSS and explains “If ever in my life I would have had a career goal, this would have been it working for FCSS and supporting the region”. Peggy has been busy using this past year in her new FCSS role to revamp the FCSS Grant application process. She has been meeting with organizations to explain how to go about applying and assisting them with navigating through the new application and reporting forms required.
What does FCSS mean for your great community idea?
FCSS in the MD 124 efforts are focused on the administration of Grants for Not-for-Profit Societies. They provide funding for the following two streams of needs:
- Organizations’ Operational Funding: Costs such as utilities, rent, insurance, supplies necessary to their programming, professional services, etc.
- Organizations’ Special Projects Funding: Speakers, seasonal and special events, programs, etc.
If an individual with a great idea for the community was to approach Peggy she would encourage that person to bring this idea to a Not-for-Profit Society in the MD 124. The charity might be interested in taking on the project and then the society will be able to apply for funding with FCSS. The person could still potentially execute on the program and the society would take on the accountability for the funds. The organization reports on the project and provides a detailed financial statement stating how the funds were spent. FCSS seeks to understand the impact its funds have on the communities it supports. Each year organizations must re-apply for FCSS funding. No one organization is ever guaranteed funding from year to year.
Are you in the MD and interested in learning more?
Peggy would be pleased for you to give her a call to ask any questions.
Phone: (780) 681-3929 or Email: Peggy.Laing@MD124.ca
MD 124 FCSS Recipients 2014 and 2015:
CHILDREN AND YOUTH PROGRAMS
Boys and Girls Club
Flatbush Nursery School
Lakeside Nursery School
ACCA Youth Leadership Conference
Flatbush Nursery School (Christmas Craft Day)
Rotary Club of Slave Lake (Kid’s Christmas Party)
Smith School Liaison and Social Skills Program
Smith School –Students to attend the Leader in Me Symposium
Lesser Slave Forest Education Society
Smith Gentle Ben (Home Support)
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT | FAMILIES
Town of Slave Lake (Family Fun Nights)