§ Mr. Don Foster
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will list the initiatives launched by his Department since May 1997 under which specific grants are allocated, indicating in each case and for each financial year the funding provided by central Government. 
§ Mr. Rooker
[holding answer 10 February 2000]: No formal grants have been awarded by the Department in respect of new initiatives since May 1997 although the Department does make a small number of grants and grants in aid to voluntary organisations and other outside bodies based on specific legislation established before that date.
We are reforming the welfare system to encourage work for those who can and to improve security for those who cannot. In delivering this, the Department is already working locally with a number of outside bodies and is looking to extend the involvement of the voluntary sector as its resources and statutory powers permit, including the establishment of a Children's Fund to help voluntary organisations to do more to eliminate child poverty. For existing local schemes, payment is generally on the basis of remuneration for services provided rather than by direct grant, and information on these arrangements is not available centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.