Grants Totalling $762,120 Awarded For FASD

For Immediate Release
September 22, 2009

VICTORIA – Five grants totalling $762,120 have been awarded from the $10-million Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Action Fund established by the B.C. Ministry of Children and Family Development and held by the Victoria Foundation.“FASD is the most common birth defect occurring in the western world,” said the fund’s advisory committee chair Jan Lutke. “This brain injury is permanent and results in lifelong challenges in all areas across the lifespan.”

September is FASD awareness month in Canada. Health Canada estimates that for every 1,000 births, nine infants will be affected by FASD.

“These grants will promote prevention and education on FASD, and fund projects designed to improve the quality of life for people living with the disorder,” said Victoria Foundation board chair Chuck Burkett.

The FASD Action Fund was established in 2006 with three focuses: $2 million to promote prevention, public education, and parent and caregiver education; $7 million for projects that focus on improving outcomes for children and youth with FASD; and $1 million in an endowment fund to help attract additional funding through community contributions.

“This government is committed to supporting the healthy development of every child, youth and family in B.C.,” said Children and Family Development Minister Mary Polak. “Development of FASD prevention programs and support systems for children and youth living with FASD and their families is included in the Province’s Strong, Safe and Supported action plan, and we’re pleased to partner with the Victoria Foundation in addressing this need.”

The Victoria Foundation is a community foundation that manages funds gifted to them either in perpetuity or for specific purposes, such as the FASD Action Fund. The funds or the earnings from them are then distributed through grants for charitable purposes.

Since 2003, the Ministry of Children and Family Development has provided the Victoria Foundation with $57 million to help communities throughout B.C. meet the needs of children, youth and their families. More than 180 organizations and thousands of British Columbians have benefited from these funds.

For more information on the FASD Action Fund or to donate to it, visit the Foundation website at or call 250-381-5532.

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Media information contact:
Sharlene Smith
Victoria Foundation
250 658-1583

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