Health Minister Robin Swann is providing an additional £66,000 of funding to ensure the continuation of the Derry Crisis Intervention Service.
Recognising the current challenges for Extern in securing sustainable funding for the service, Minister Swann made the decision to provide a further six months of funding to Derry and Strabane District Council for a short term extension of the project until the end of 2021.
Minister Swann said, "I hope this additional funding allows this vital service to continue and an opportunity to try and reach a longer term funding solution for the initiative. It will also most importantly provide assurance for those most in need that the service is available.
"The service evaluation has shown positive benefits for those clients who are in crisis and this work is vital given the wide-ranging impacts of this pandemic and particularly on those most vulnerable.
"I also recently announced a new £10m Mental Health Support Fund which will provide grants to charity organisations who provide interventions to improve the population's mental health. This has been funded from Covid emergency monies made available to my Department and may provide a further opportunity for Extern to consider in seeking funding for this project."
The Mental Health Support Fund will equip and enable community and voluntary organisations in providing a wide range of support services for people with mental ill health and help to ensure that those who need to can continue to access mental health support services in the community.
The fund is expected to formally open within the next few months and will be accessible through the Community Foundation website.
A review of crisis services has recently been completed and is being considered by the Department with a view to a more cohesive commissioning of crisis services regionally.
Notes to editors:
1. Derry’s Crisis Intervention Service was commissioned by Derry and Strabane District Council and is delivered solely by Extern.
2. The service responds to individuals in the area who are in crisis and need immediate support.
3. The service is available throughout the weekend period. It is staffed by qualified professionals and available to anyone experiencing social, situational or emotional crisis.
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