BC Rural Dividend grants over $10 million for rural projects—$1.2 million in Kootenays

Successful project grants range from supporting rural and Indigenous young entrepreneurs to a South Kootenay trail project.

Picture of white golf ball in foreground, with Revelstoke Golf Club in background.

The Revelstoke Golf Course is one of the projects that will benefit from the Rural Dividend funding. — Photo courtesy Revelstoke Golf Course

VICTORIA – The B.C. government is distributing $10.1 million in new grants to help rural communities stabilize their economies and create long-term local employment, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Doug Donaldson announced in mid-October.

Funding is being awarded to 90 local governments, First Nations and not-for-profit organizations around the province for single (up to $100,000) and partnership (up to $500,000) projects.

Under the special circumstances provision of the program, the B.C. government is providing $758,000 to five projects in wildfire-impacted areas. Under the regular program stream, about $1.7 million is going to communities affected by the 2017 wildfires.

Successful project grants range from supporting rural and Indigenous young entrepreneurs in Northern British Columbia, to a South Kootenay historic trail project that will complete the first two phases of a trail system designed to showcase the area, and a Cariboo-based First Nation who are working to expand domestic sales and international exports of an energy drink. 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.

Here is a list of organizations in the Kootenays (listed most to least amounts received) that received funding, adding up to over $1.24 million: 

  • Regional District of Central Kootenay (four projects) – $397,755
  • Town of Golden – $100,000
  • Community Futures Central Kootenay – $100,000
  • Community Futures East Kootenay – $100,000
  • Kootenay Association for Science & Technology – $100,000
  • City of Revelstoke – $100,000
  • Ktuanxa Nation Council Society – $100,000
  • Kootenay Employment Services Society – $99,840
  • Lower Kootenay Band – $99,790
  • Fernie Chamber of Commerce – $36,900
  • South Kootenay Lake Community Service Society – $10,000

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