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Ontario provides Peterborough with $784,500 in social services relief funding

The City of Peterborough is receiving an additional $784,500 to support social services. File

The province of Ontario is providing the City of Peterborough with an additional $784,500 in social services relief funding, the region’s MPP announced Thursday.

According to Peterborough-Kawartha MPP Dave Smith, the discretionary funding — part of the government’s $510-million investment through the Social Services Fund — can be used to improve the delivery of critical services, protect homeless shelter staff and residents, renovate and purchase shelter facilities, add to rent banks, create longer-term housing solutions and support plans to prepare for potential future outbreaks and/or emergencies.

Read more: COVID-19: Pandemic highlights need to address homelessness in Peterborough

“We need to be there for those who need help the most, especially during such challenging times,” Smith said.

“We know that COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of having a place to call home, access to healthy food and safe, supportive social services.”

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The Ontario government is allocating an additional $120 million to help municipalities and Indigenous community partners protect vulnerable people during COVID-19. This investment builds upon the second phase of social services relief funding announced this fall.

Peterborough Mayor Diane Therrien says the city is “extremely grateful” for the additional funding.

“COVID-19 has been especially hard on those who are most vulnerable in Peterborough and this support will help us to deliver support and services that are greatly needed,” she said.

Read more: COVID-19 prompting employment challenges for Peterborough

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Smith says since the beginning of the pandemic, the City of Peterborough has received $3,810,241 through the government of Ontario’s Social Services Relief Fund.

“Our government continues to respond to the pandemic with significant investments for our municipal and Indigenous partners,” said Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

“As the public health situation continues to evolve, we are providing more support, so our partners are in a better position to protect those who need it most.”

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