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EXTRA LOTTERY CASH WILL HELP EQUIP BRITAIN FOR THE FUTURE

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Extra money raised by the national lottery will be invested to ...
Extra money raised by the national lottery will be invested to

help equip more communities and individuals across the country for

the future under plans announced last week, said culture secretary Chris Smith.

He was commenting on the prime minister's announcement that the

government intends to make available an extra£400m to the New

Opportunities Fund to be spent on cancer prevention, treatment and

care, green spaces and sustainable communities, and community access

to lifelong learning.

The money is in addition to the£200m announced last week

for the arts, sport, heritage and charities, and results from revised

forecasts of lottery income for good causes between now and 2001.

Mr Smith also confirmed that the arts, sport, heritage and

charities are each guaranteed 162/3 per cent of good cause lottery

proceeds after the current licence expires in 2001.

The share of lottery money currently given to the Millennium

Commission will, after 2001, go to NOF, giving it one third of the

overall good cause proceeds.

He also urged all lottery distributors to encourage volunteering

in the projects they support, reflecting the government's commitment

to the Giving Age. NOF initiatives will emphasise help for people who

are disabled or socially disadvantaged, especially in lifelong

learning.

Mr Smith said:

'I want more people than ever before to be able to share in the

success of the national lottery. This extra money will enable us to

invest in the things that matter most.

'At the same time we can also grasp the opportunity to improve

the quality of our lives by helping our enjoyment of leisure

activities like sport and the arts, protecting the buildings and open

spaces around us, and supporting local fund raising projects and

neighbourhood groups.

'The lottery has been so successful it is already transforming

the face of Britain. Now we can ensure it brings benefits to all our

lives.'

A consultation paper setting out the new NOF initiatives will be

published in the next few weeks to gauge the public's views before

seeking parliamentary approval. It will propose three major new

initiatives:

- Spaces and Sustainable Communities

Help for urban and rural communities to understand, improve and

care for their natural and living environment. The main focus will be

on the creation, improvement or acquisition of green spaces,

particularly for children's play, or because of their environmental

or scenic importance.

Funding would also be available to encourage sustainable

communities, for example by making walking and cycling to school

safer, or using sustainable technologies such as solar panels.

prevention, detection, treatment and care

A new programme building on local fund-raising efforts to

provide equipment, improve access to screening and treatment, and

help individuals and families cope with the impact of cancer on their

lives.

- Access to lifelong learning

Help to provide a step-change in access to lifelong learning,

particularly by providing IT learning centres for the University for

Industry, by linking up the National Grid for Learning and local

libraries, and helping to bring adults back into learning.

To help realise the government's vision of the Giving Age, all

distributors are being challenged to work together in local

communities to encourage volunteers on Lottery projects. The National

Lottery Charities Board will have a key role in helping to address

gaps in the infrastructure for bringing volunteers and opportunities

for volunteering together through its strategic plan, on which it is

already consulting.

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