Community Futures, Sechelt get $110K in Rural Dividend grants

Community Futures Sunshine Coast and the District of Sechelt are getting a share of the almost $19 million in Rural Dividend Grants recently announced by the province.

“This funding supports the diverse needs of small communities throughout the province and the people who live in them,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development.

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The biggest grant locally is going to Community Futures, which is getting $85,340 to put toward creating a “community resource lab.”

The organization released the details of the project on May 16.

The idea, according to Community Futures, is “to bring non-profit organizations, social enterprises and social entrepreneurs closer together as a means of addressing complex community challenges, sparking creativity, and gaining operational efficiencies.”

“The Community Resource Lab will provide a place where organizations can collide, sharing best practices, space, administrative costs, and at the same time offer a ‘one-stop’ shop for residents seeking community services and local connections. The lab will focus on delivering impact on multiple levels – social, environmental, and economic,” said volunteer leadership team chair Pat Hunt.

Community Futures is working on the initiative with the Sunshine Coast Community Resource Centre through a team that also includes representatives from  the Sechelt Downtown Business Association, District of Sechelt, Sunshine Coast Regional Economic Development Agency, Sunshine Coast Credit Union, Tsain-ko Development Corporation, and Sechelt Public Library.

The majority of funding will be used to hire a project manager and secure a space.

The District of Sechelt received a grant of $25,140 which will be used for the Suncoaster Trail project and help pay for the completion of the remainder of the Suncoaster Trail through the District of Sechelt.

The total project budget is $250,000 and other funding will come from Development Cost Charges and Gas Tax Revenue.

“This announcement is very timely with May being Active Transportation Month. We look forward to moving ahead with the second phase of the Suncoaster Trail through Sechelt so our local residents and visitors can enjoy this fantastic new trail option,” said Mayor Darnelda Siegers.

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