A CRUCIAL substance misuse support service has had its future secured, following the re-running of a grants application process.
Leven-based Drug and Alcohol Project Ltd. feared the rug was about to be pulled from under its feet when it seemed its funding was to be channelled into national groups Barnardo’s and Addaction Scotland, following a short grant funding application process last year.
However, councillors raised concerns about the Fife Alcohol and Drug Partnership (ADP) process, before it was agreed that it be re-run to allow smaller groups to work together on proposals.
And on Thursday, DAPL, along with other health and social care groups who submitted fresh applications, learned their funding for the next three years had been approved at a meeting of the NHS Fife and Fife Council health and social care partnership.
DAPL service co-ordinator Martin Denholm told the Mail: “The key thing for us is that it has been agreed and we can now continue getting on with the job in hand.
“For DAPL, the past has been difficult but we’re now looking forward to working with the ADP.
“We’re happy to be in this position now and are determined to continue this provision in Fife and make it even better.”
The group, which also has a base in Kirkcaldy, was successful in applying for £885,000 for the next three years.
DAPL offers counselling and support to families whose lives are affected with various kinds of substance abuse.
Other groups who were also successful in their funding bids include Barnardos, Clued Up, FIRST, Frontline Fife, Next Steps, FASS, Addaction and the West Fife Community Drugs Team.
Leader of the Fife Council administration, Councillor Peter Grant, said: “We now have a voluntary sector in Fife that is more suitable for the future and I know services are happy with how the process is working.
“What we have is a better result than the last time.”
Chair of the ADP, George Cunningham, said the funding awards would “drive forward” the strategy of the Fife health and social care partnership.
He described the grant funding application process as being “robust and transparent” and thanked the various services who took part.
Mr Cunningham added: “I believe the recommendations are better for the future of Fife.
“We have good results from our process and I think we are in a position now where we shall be able to drive services forward in the coming three years.
“There have still been one or two who have been left disappointed with the outcome but they are certainly less vocal this time.”
As part of the funding recommendations, the ADP has also been given the power to review and amend grants subject to Scottish Government awards and cost of living uplifts.
Councillor Alex Rowley told the meeting one of the most important issues now was to ensure all parties involved continued to “keep a grip” of Fife’s drug and alcohol issues.
ADP co-ordinator, Mark Steven, added: “There is a real desire to get on with the job and focus on the service users out there.
“This is very, very positive.”
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