People on the South Shore will soon have more opportunities and places to be physically active thanks to a $476,820 investment from the province’s recreation facility development program. Barry Barnet, Minister of Health Promotion and Protection, announced the investments today, June 11, for community groups, not-for-profit organizations and associations on the South Shore. “Providing children, families and seniors with accessible places to participate in sport and recreation is a key part of our plan to build safer, healthier communities,” said Mr. Barnet. “These groups have worked hard to improve their communities and we are proud to support them with these investments.” The grants will be used to develop trail systems, renovate community centres and construct playgrounds in the region. Recreation facility development is a $3-million program that helps municipalities and community groups plan, construct, renovate, conserve or acquire facilities for public recreation. Eligible projects include community centres, pools, sport facilities, parks, playgrounds, trails and other outdoor facilities. Community groups develop facilities to increase public participation in sport and physical recreation. They work with Health Promotion and Protection staff to plan projects and apply for funding. The recreation facility development grant program provides up to one third of capital costs; communities are responsible for raising the rest. The program will help create about $14.5 million in construction through 84 organizations. “Our goal is to make Nova Scotia the healthiest province in the country,” said Mr. Barnet. “These announcements represent another positive step toward reaching that goal.” Recreation facility development is one part of the province’s commitment to invest $68 million in sport and recreation infrastructure by the year 2017.