EKC announces Community Cash Awards finalists
Since 2016, when the Community Cash Awards were first announced, EKC has returned $22,504 to the community groups. The funding continues to develop healthy and diverse communities. It also offers an opportunity for local groups to build awareness.
Six finalists were selected from a multitude of worthy applications. Unlike other funding initiatives, the Community Cash Awards provide EKC members, as well as the community, the opportunity to ‘invest in’ and select the award winners.
According to Diane Byford, EKC Board Member and Chair of the Nominating Committee, “We’re so impressed with the quality of the applications we received through the Elk Valley Community Cash Awards. It’s incredible how many community organizations are contributing to the creation of healthy and sustainable communities. It was difficult to select the finalists and we truly appreciate and thank all of the applicants for their efforts.”
Each of the Community Cash Awards finalists will participate in the next round by setting up information tables to promote their organization and project at EKC’s Elkford, Fernie, and Sparwood branches the week of April 8-13.
The finalists are:
Elkford Early Years
Funds will be used to purchase equipment and items for activities in the new summer outdoor program for children in the Elkford area.
Elkford Arts Council
Funds will be used to install a publicly accessible community art display “Pass in the Clouds.” This piece will engage and involve the community, fostering a connection between neighbors in a shared history and occupation of space that is shared in the valley.
Fernie Pets Society
Funds will be used to provide fencing for the established dog park which will increase the safety of the animals and people that utilize the park and surrounding areas.
Fernie Family Community Garden by The Holy Family Church
Funds will be used to increase the accessibility and inclusiveness of the Community Garden for all demographics in the community and support physical health and well-being with the connection to nature.
Sparwood Farmer’s Market Society
Funds will be used to increase sustainability and engagement of the market as well as provide a venue and growth opportunity for local businesses to contribute to the local economy.
Frank J. Mitchell Elementary School PAC (Sparwood)
Funds will be used to increase the amount of playground equipment for both the children of the school and non-school aged children in the community to be used year-round.
After showcasing their projects, all the finalists will be invited to set up displays to promote their initiative at EKC’s Annual General Meeting taking place in Sparwood on Tuesday, April 30, at the Causeway Bay Hotel.
The doors open at 5:30 p.m. with the community groups available to answer questions. The meeting starting at 7 p.m. Guests are encouraged to stay for the presentation of the winner around 8 p.m.
At the AGM, members, non-members, and youth will receive EKC Community Cash to ‘invest’ with one or more of the community groups of their choice. Elk Valley members will receive $40, Cranbrook members will receive $50, non-members will receive $20, and all youth (18 and under) will receive $10.
Each of the groups will receive $500 for attending the AGM as well as the real cash equivalent to the Community Cash they accumulate throughout the event. The group who receives the most Community Cash will also receive an additional $500 in funding.
CEO Jody Burk adds, “We’re excited that this process provides a fun and inclusive way to involve both EKC members as well as local youth and the community in selecting the Community Cash Awards recipients.”
During the meeting portion of the event a children’s movie will be shown in another room. Snacks and limited supervision will be provided. Additional supervision by parents and or caregivers may be required. After the meeting, all guests are invited back for the announcement of the winner of the Community Cash Awards.
It’s important to note that members, non-members, supporters and youth who wish to participate in investing ‘Community Cash’ must RSVP that they will attend the AGM by April 23 to Pam Pinch (info below). Cranbrook members are invited to take the free shuttle to Sparwood. The shuttle will depart Cranbrook branch parking lot at 5 p.m. sharp.
EKC was established in 1950 and has grown to over $343 million in assets and serves over 11,480 members throughout the East Kootenay. EKC is a community based financial cooperative that offers a full range of banking, financial planning (EKC MoneyWorks) and general insurance (KIS Ltd) services. Our community branches are located in Cranbrook, Elkford, Fernie, and Sparwood. Please visit us at one of our branches, Facebook or at EKCCU.COM