BC Rural Dividend grant for Trails Society
As part of its rural development mandate, the Government of British Columbia is providing over $103,000 for cultural, social and infrastructure projects in the Kootenays, Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall and Kootenay-West MLA Katrine Conroy announced today.
Included in the funding announcement is $10,000 for the Kimberley Trails Society to build a climbing trail to the top of the trail network in the Bootleg Mountain Recreation Site.
“These grants recognize the ongoing efforts of Kootenay residents to improve their communities and contribute to more vigorous rural economies in British Columbia,” said Mungall.
“The wide range of projects being supported by the BC Rural Dividend program in the Kootenays says a lot about the ingenuity and resourcefulness of the people who live here,” said Conroy. “The grant recipients will make their communities stronger and more vibrant.”
The funding is part of nearly $700,000 in project development grants being awarded to eligible local governments, First Nations and not-for-profit organizations under the BC Rural Dividend program. These grants, up to $10,000 each, help rural communities develop projects to stabilize their economies and create long-term local employment.
“Congratulations to everyone involved,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “The selected projects reflect the strength of rural communities – people working together for the good of the community.”
The Kimberley project is the only one in the East Kootenay in on the funding, with the bulk of it going to Central Kootenay projects.
Nearby, the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce is being awarded $5,000 to draft and implement a business recovery strategy for local communities, in co-operation with the Regional District of Central Kootenay, the Town of Creston and other stakeholders.
And the Field Recreation Advisory Association is being awarded $10,000 to repurpose St. Joseph Catholic Church into a community arts and wellness centre and a multifunctional space for community events.
The rural dividend encourages economic diversification, innovation, sustainability and collaboration, and recognizes the diverse needs of individual communities.
According to a Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development press release, projects were assessed and approved based on the following criteria: Rural communities most in need; improved community resiliency and economic strength; partnership-building and enhanced shared prosperity; project feasibility and sustainability; economic impact on rural communities; attracting and retaining youth; innovation in economic development.