Sherbrooke launches emergency fund for community organizations

Record Staff

The city of Sherbrooke has committed $75,000 of its operational budget for this year to the creation of an emergency fund for local community organizations who are working with vulnerable people in the region. Of this amount, a maximum of $21,000 will be set aside for the Corporation de développement communautaire de Sherbrooke (CDC) to support its transport solidarity project, which will cover the cost of STS transportation tickets for the 215 beneficiaries for the months of April and May. The remaining $ 54,000 will be distributed mainly among organizations working in food security and support for vulnerable people based on current needs. The amount granted will be based on a fixed amount per week, according to the estimated number of vulnerable people reached.
The creation of this emergency fund is in response to the analysis of the Observatoire québécois des inégalités, which present the consequences and repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic on the population. According to the Observatoire’s research, certain socio-demographic groups are more affected by this pandemic, such as women, the elderly, people experiencing poverty, and certain ethnocultural groups as well as people with respiratory illnesses, immunocompromised patients or those suffering from chronic illnesses. These conditions make them more vulnerable to contamination. In addition, their exposure to risk is increased since they are more likely to be in precarious employment or requiring direct contact with other people.
Several Sherbrooke organizations have already mobilized to accompany and support these vulnerable groups. The CDC and the Regroupement des organismes communautaires (ROC) de l’Estrie coordinated the establishment of the Comité Action et Entraide Sherbrooke, which brings together around twenty organizations that meet virtually once a week to coordinate information and strategies to be implemented on the following subjects: housing, homelessness, food security, immigrants, and seniors. “I would like to thank all of the community organizations that are actively working to help our people,” said Mayor Steve Lussier. “This contribution should help relieve them in the short term while waiting to see the measures that will be adopted by other levels of government.”
“The crisis we are experiencing is unprecedented, and many of the people of Sherbrooke will turn to help resources,” added Evelyne Beaudin, chair of the city’s social and community development committee. “The emergency fund will do good to organizations and allow them to help more people. As a community, we must not leave anyone behind.”
Elsewhere in the Townships, the Town of Windsor announced the creation of a similar fund on Tuesday. That fund is in the amount of $25,000.

Published in the Wednesday, April 8 edition of The Record.

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