Community groups that used the Southend Community Centre in Sydney for their programming now have a new home.
Premier Stephen McNeil announced today, Jan. 23, the province will lease the former Mira Road Elementary School to the Southend Community Development Association.
“The loss of the Southend Community Centre was devastating to the groups offering community education and activities there, as well as the many people taking part in those programs,” said Premier McNeil. “I’m delighted the province has been able to offer the centre a new location. These programs and activities are an important part of building stronger communities.”
The Southend Community Centre sustained extensive water damage in the Thanksgiving Day flood. Demolition of the building began on Jan. 18.
Mira Road Elementary School has been vacant since the end of the 2015-16 school year. The building was owned by the Cape Breton Regional Municipality. The province exercised its option to reclaim the property, as it was not in use, and lease it to the Southend Community Development Association for one dollar.
“We are very excited with this wonderful opportunity to rebuild our local community centre, left in ruins as a result of the recent devastating flood in Sydney,” said Rick Fraser, executive director of the Southend Community Development Association. “With this new facility, we can now begin the work necessary to open the doors to the public again, redesign services and broaden our scope to the community.”
Any resident, small business or non-profit organization with eligible damages from the Thanksgiving Day flood can get financial help to rebuild and repair their homes and property.
The province has a Disaster Financial Assistance program that covers uninsurable damage to items like basic household goods, appliances (washers, dryers, furnaces), and structural damage to the home.
Since the flood, the Disaster Financial Assistance program has received 857 applications and has paid over $2.3 million to homeowners. Staff continue to work hard to resolve all claims as quickly as possible.
For more information on Disaster Financial Assistance, visit http://novascotia.ca/dma/emo/disaster_financial_assistance or call 1-866-424-5620.