The Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, the Honourable Bill Blair, announced an investment of up to $4.5 million over 5 years for the expansion of the YMCAs of Quebec’s Alternative Suspension program, a dropout prevention program that helps at-risk youth, aged 12-17, participate in personalized activities as an alternative to a traditional school suspension. This investment will expand the program by adding new sites across Canada including locations in British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec, and provide services to an additional 1600 youth.
The initiative is the first time the Government of Canada has used a Social Impact Bond (SIB) funding approach in the area of community safety where investors provide upfront capital and the Government of Canada pays a return on investment once the desired social outcomes are achieved. If the outcomes are not achieved, investors receive neither a return nor repayment of principal.
The SIB was co-developed by Public Safety Canada, Impact Canada and MaRS Discovery District, which helped secure investment partners to support this innovative funding approach. Interested investors include the Toronto Foundation, Inspirit Foundation, Lawson Foundation, Robert Kerr Foundation and the Counselling Foundation of Canada. The YMCAs of Quebec has engaged a third-party evaluator to validate the outcomes of the program, to determine its effectiveness and inform its future application.
Read the full news release here.