B.C. government gives $25,000 to help East Kootenay families

The Ministry of Health has provided Friends of Children with a one-time grant of $25,000.

  • May. 16, 2014 2:00 p.m.

The Ministry of Health has provided Friends of Children with a one-time grant of $25,000. This funding will help the society to continue the services it provides to Northern B.C. and East Kootenay families in need of assistance with out of province care.

“Families from the East Kootenay are so far from Vancouver, their children are usually not referred to BC Children’s Hospital,” said East Kootenay MLA Bill Bennett. “This makes it very challenging for many families who must go to Calgary to secure the medical care needed by their children. This grant will really help these families.”

The Ministry of Health’s primary concern is ensuring British Columbians receive the health care they need, wherever they are in Canada. This funding helps to ensure that children in border communities, such as in Northeastern B.C. or the East Kootenays, can choose to go to Alberta for surgical and diagnostic services, and still maintain the support of family.

“It can be reassuring for parents to know that if their child needs out of province care, the costs of that care will be covered,” said Health Minister Terry Lake. “For these families, accommodation and travel can add financial stress at an already stressful time, which is why organizations like Friends of Children help by providing B.C. families with both financial and emotional support.”

Friends of Children is a non-profit society that assists Northern B.C. and East Kootenay families with children who have extraordinary medical need. Each year, the registered charity receives over 200 requests for support with children’s medical emergencies, therapies, specialized equipment, and drug prescriptions, as well as out of town accommodation, meal and travel costs.