Family Support Networks (FSNs) are groups of family members or unpaid caregivers of people with developmental disabilities that provide peer-to-peer support. The Ministry of Community and Social Services is announcing the distribution of $500,000 in the first year of funding for FSNs and organizations whose primary purpose is to support FSNs.

After the call for applications in March 2018, the ministry received 92 applications. Ministry staff and external representatives with knowledge and experience in FSNs reviewed applications in accordance with the eligibility and other criteria set out in the application guidelines.

The ministry will be providing 29 FSNs and organizations with funding to enhance the engagement of members, promote communications and information-sharing among members, and provide administrative support to the network or organization.

This funding will also help to better connect families and caregivers to one another, and to find appropriate supports and services. It will also help support members through training, education, mentoring and future planning.

This is part of a $12.5 million suite of initiatives first announced in June 2017 that will improve access to supports and services for people with developmental disabilities. Further information on Year 2 funding for 2019/20 will be announced later in 2018.