Ranjana Basu of the Cowichan Family Caregivers Support Society was on hand at the CVRD’s first board meeting of the year, Wednesday, to update directors on its Young Carers Program’s activities over the last year and to ask for continued financial support.
"With the resources that we have now we can continue to provide some minimal services and continue to raise awareness," Basu said.
"But in order to actually reach young people…we need someone who is dedicated to outreach – someone who can spend the time necessary to reach young people and their families so that we can develop some successful strategies that we can share, we can use to reach more families and share with other communities across Canada. We need more funds in order to do that," Basu said.
In her presentation Basu explained young carers courageously take on responsibilities beyond their years to care for a family member in need. The Cowichan region program has broken new ground in B.C. in raising awareness and developing support for this often overlooked segment of the youth population.
In the 2013 budget year, the CVRD board approved a $40,000 grant to the Cowichan Family Caregivers Support Society.
This year, in addition to their request for continued regional district support, the Society has applied for gaming grants as well as to Shaw Cable’s grant program, which could see them get a $150,000 infusion over three years.
"We need ongoing community support to make it all work," she admitted.