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Posted: March 25, 2014

Projects support social well-being in Columbia Basin

32 projects receive support from the Trust’s Social Grants Program 

Thirty-two projects that support social well-being have been approved to receive nearly $1 million in funding from Columbia Basin Trust’s Social Grants Program.

“Our selection committee approved a diverse range of projects from a strong showing of applications during our annual intake,” said Sabrina Curtis, Director Sector Initiatives. “These projects will continue to build and strengthen the social sector in our region.”

One of the successful recipients is the Golden Food Bank Society. Its project involves a food recovery program for the Golden area.

“In this initial stage, we hope to help minimize waste while increasing our supply of food for hampers,” said Melanie Myers, Executive Director. “We also hope to create a more sustainable food bank model that other groups can use in the future.”

Another successful recipient is the City of Revelstoke, which will deliver a financial literacy program.

“Our goals are to help our community’s residents to be more secure financially and to strengthen our community’s ability to work together to address financial literacy needs,” said Alan Mason, Director, Community Economic Development, Revelstoke and area. “This project is an important part of collaborative efforts to reduce poverty in our community over the long term.”

The Elkford Women’s Task Force Society will offer a program for Elk Valley children aged three to five years, which will use play and parent participation to promote positive self-image, physical activity and healthy eating.

“The Healthy Start program will present physical-based education in a fun and exciting way,” said Jennifer Cherney, Elkford Early Childhood Development Coordinator. “It will give families ideas of how to make physical activity fun at home, while encouraging children to have positive self-esteem and make healthy eating choices, in hopes of helping reduce childhood obesity. It will also prepare children for kindergarten.”

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cranbrook will pilot the expansion of its program into Nelson and Castlegar.

“After a year of development work we are thrilled to be able to offer our In School Mentoring programs in Castlegar and Nelson in 2014,” said Dana Osiowy, Executive Director. “We know about the long-term benefits to our children when they have a mentor and having a professionally trained and supported mentoring team in the West Kootenay will mean those benefits will be felt throughout the communities.”

The St. Mary’s Indian Band project aims to support Band Elders to connect with their community.

“Our Sharing Wisdom project focuses on the socialization and well-being for our community. This grant will help to bring elders together within the nation and mentor cultural and traditional teachings,” said Cindy Wales, RN Community Health Representative. “By sharing their wisdom, elders will feel valued and become more active within the community.”

The Social Grants Program Selection Committee makes the granting decisions. This volunteer group of Basin residents includes individuals who have experience and expertise in the social sector, and individuals who have broader community development experience.

For more information about the program, visit cbt.org/sgp.

Columbia Basin Trust supports efforts to deliver social, economic and environmental benefits to the residents of the Columbia Basin. To learn more about the Trust’s programs and initiatives, visit cbt.org or call 1-800-505-8998.

Above photo: Food Banks in the Basin mural. Illustration by Fern Sabo.

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