ETSI-BC Awards $625,000 in Funding to Support 28 Projects in the Southern Interior

This summer, communities in the Southern Interior of BC have a new reason to celebrate. The Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC) has recently unveiled the successful applicants of its 2024 Spring Funding Intake. It has granted $625,000 in funding in support of 28 projects aimed at enhancing and diversifying the region’s economy.

The projects are a collaborative effort involving local governments, First Nations, and non-profit business support organizations in BC’s Southern Interior. Since re-branding as ETSI-BC, the organization has now provided more than $8.4 million in grant funding in the region, on more than 300 economic development projects worth in excess of $19 million.

Laurel Douglas, CEO of ETSI-BC, said, “We are thrilled to announce that with this latest round of approved projects, ETSI-BC continues to be a driving force supporting local economic growth. We received 43 applications with a total request of $1.2 million. The ETSI-BC grant team worked very hard work with the proponents to meet this target while also helping as many communities as possible. These projects, collectively worth over $1.7 million, will play a significant role in the creation or preservation of over 2,805 jobs in the region.”

The impact of ETSI-BC funding can be felt across the BC Southern Interior.  Projects approved in this Funding Intake are being undertaken in one First Nation and eight Regional Districts in the Southern Interior, including the Thompson-Nicola, North Okanagan, Okanagan Similkameen, Central Okanagan, Fraser Valley, Central Kootenay, East Kootenay, and the Columbia Shuswap.

Paul Donald, the newly-elected ETSI-BC Board Chair, expressed his support, “On behalf of the ETSI-BC Board, I am thrilled to share this news. These projects will help build economic development capacity in our communities, support innovation, and help advance key sectors of our region’s economy.”

Laurel Douglas added, “We are proud of the difference we are making all over the Southern Interior and eagerly anticipate seeing these exciting projects as they unfold.”

Here is the list of approved projects from the ETSI-BC Spring 2024 Funding Intake:

Accelerate Okanagan Economic Impact Study of Okanagan Technology Sector $24,000
Armstrong Spallumcheen Chamber Local Sustainable Agri-Industry Connections $16,500
Chawathil First Nation Economic Development Corporation Planning $20,000
Columbia Valley Tourism Marketing Society Downtown Invermere Branding Initiative $20,000
Community Futures Okanagan Similkameen Okanagan Food & Innovation Hub Project Implementation $50,000
Community Futures Revelstoke Creative Cultural Cluster – land feasibility assessment $38,000
Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce Exploring Rural Non-Profit Collaborative Social Enterprise Models $18,000
Elkford Chamber of Commerce 2024 ECOC Business Growth and Strategy Plan $19,000
Hope Business and Development Society Downtown Revitalization: Business Facade & Community Amenities $25,000
Kamloops Innovation Centre Society Business Services Expansion Strategy $10,000
Kicking Horse Chamber of Commerce Golden Workforce Innovation & Youth Mentorship Program $13,000
Kootenay Employment Services Society Southeastern BC Agriculture Forum $35,000
KORE Re-Hub Mobile Repair Tour & Hardgoods Repair Lab $40,000
Lower Columbia Initiatives Corporation West Kootenay Recruitment Agency Incubation Pilot $25,000
North Shuswap Chamber of Commerce North Shuswap Business Facade Improvement Program $15,000
Regional District East Kootenay Columbia Valley Film Coordinator $20,000
Salmo District Arts Council Salmo District Arts Council Business and Cultural Plan $20,000
Sand Creek Community Club Economic Growth Plan/ Grant Writer $20,000
Shuswap Economic Development Society Business Facade Improvement: Falkland, Silver Creek & Area $15,000
Silver Star Resort Association Building Shoulder Season Capacity $40,000
Similkameen Country Development Ass’n Keremeos & Area Economic Vitality Initiative $16,500
South Shuswap Chamber of Commerce Business Attraction Retention & Expansion: $20,000
Spallumcheen, Township of Agri-Hub Business Plan $20,000
Thompson Nicola Regional District “Love Where You Live – Blue River” $20,000
Tourism Golden Association Feasibility Study for LMS Platform and Tourism Business Incubator $10,000
Tourism Kamloops Establishing an Iconic Attraction for Regional Tourism Growth $20,000
Travel Penticton Society Examining the Economic Impact of MICE $15,000
Vernon Jubilee Hospital Physician Society Physician Waffle House $20,000

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