Columbia Basin Trust annual report reveals positive community impacts

The Basin region has received nearly $100 milllion in funding through Columbia Basin Trust projects, grants and initiatives

by Julie Matchett
Infographic showing funding from Columbia Basin Trust.

Nearly $100 million has been provided to Basin residents and communities by the Columbia Basin Trust. — Image courtesy Columbia Basin Trust

The Columbia Basin Trust continues to provide positive impacts to the people and communities in the Basin as revealed in their 2019/20 Annual Service Plan Report. Over $97.3 million has been earmarked for programs, initiatives and capital investments in our region, including $68 million in grants, $12.2 million in projects to support economic development and broadband infrastructure, and $9.2 million in business loans.

“Working with partners and communities, we’ve kept moving forward on the things that the people in the Basin have told us matters to them including affordable housing, childcare and the environment,” said Johnny Strilaeff, Columbia Basin Trust president and CEO. “We are grateful for their vision, support and collaboration over the last 25 years and are deeply appreciative of how we have been able to grow and evolve as we worked together to serve the people and communities in the region.”

The Columbia Basin Trust adheres to 13 strategic priorities set out in the Columbia Basin Management Plan, and they guide the Trust’s efforts to support communities. Along with the introduction of new programs and initiatives, over 2,100 projects were advanced throughout 2019/20. Some of these initiatives include:

  • New funding to help businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic: In an effort to provide additional support to local small business owners, vulnerable populations, First Nations communities, social service operators and childcare providers, the Columbia Basin Trust announced over $11 million in new funding to their various grants and programs.
  • Training fee support, wage-subsidy programs: In order to help the region’s businesses and workforce navigate the ongoing pandemic, Columbia Basin Trust adjusted their programs and services to provide relevant support, such as low-interest loans to help with modifications to business operations, free advice on how to become more tech-savvy, wage subsidies to hire summer students and support for short-term training. 
  • Community Outdoor Revitalization Grants: Eleven communities across the region received grants to create or reinvigorate outdoor public spaces. Among the funded projects were a new roof added to a public pavilion in Edgewater and a gazebo area and art installation beside the City Hall in Cranbrook.
  • Affordable housing: The struggle to find safe and affordable housing has been an ongoing issue in the Basin region. The Columbia Basin Trust continues to support affordable housing projects in communities across the area.

For 25 years, Columbia Basin Trust has been supporting your ideas and efforts. To learn more about the Trust’s resources and support, visit ourtrust.org or call 1-800-505-8998. 

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