ARCHIVED - Harper Government is making a difference for African Nova Scotian children and youth

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New Glasgow – February 26, 2012 — Today, on behalf of the Honourable Vic Toews, Canada's Public Safety Minister, the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Member of Parliament for Central Nova, marked Nova Scotia's African Heritage Month celebrations by announcing a federally-funded crime prevention project, which will help at-risk African Nova Scotian children and youth make positive life choices.

“I am pleased to be home in New Glasgow during Nova Scotia's African Heritage Month celebrations,” said Minister MacKay. “The crime prevention project announced today is providing at-risk African Nova Scotian youth with life skills that will empower them to make smart choices and to stay away from crime.  Our government is committed to building stronger, safer communities across Canada.” 

Project LEAD is a program run by the Office of African Nova Scotian Affairs for at-risk African Nova Scotian children and youth, grades 5 to 8, in the communities of Digby, New Glasgow, Whitney Pier and Glace Bay.  Through the program, participants learn about the consequences of poor choices and are encouraged to strive for excellence, while learning about African culture and heritage in Nova Scotia. The funding amount is almost $1 million over three years and two months. 

“We're very pleased to be offering Project LEAD with the support of Public Safety Canada, the Cape Breton County Economic Development Authority and our community partners,” said Percy Paris, Minister of African Nova Scotian Affairs. “This project is teaching youth to be proud of their heritage, and giving them the skills to make positive and healthy life choices.”

The Next Phase of Canada's Economic Action Plan includes a number of initiatives to help ensure that all Canadians can feel safe in their own communities, including $7.5 million per year in ongoing funding to support youth crime prevention programs. These programs help youth make smart choices through the provision of community-based educational, cultural, sporting and vocational opportunities.

The Government of Canada has strengthened the National Crime Prevention Strategy.  In 2011 alone, the government funded 138 community-based crime prevention programs through the National Crime Prevention Strategy, in which nearly 16,000 at-risk youth participated.

About the National Crime Prevention Strategy:

The National Crime Prevention Strategy is administered by Public Safety Canada's National Crime Prevention Centre. The Centre provides funding support to selected projects that help prevent crime and increase knowledge about what works in crime prevention. It is a part of the Government of Canada's plan to tackle crime in order to build stronger, safer communities. The National Crime Prevention Strategy's priorities are:

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