Ktunaxa Enterprises Ltd (KEL), the business arm of the Ktunaxa Nation, was successfully formed to facilitate the launch and expansion of multiple community-focused businesses and work towards economic self-sustainability. Supported by ETSI-BC funding, the organization offers high-level support for multiple business units and collectively pursues and manages responsible businesses adhering to Ktunaxa values on behalf of shareholders Ktunaxa Nation Council Society, Éaq`am, Éakisq`nuk First Nation, Lower Kootenay Band, and Tobacco Plains Band communities.
Here are some regional success stories to inspire your next economic development project.
The Kootenay Employment Services Society launched the Creston & District Community Investment Co-op with a $25,000 grant from ETSI-BC (formerly Southern Interior Development Trust – SIDIT).
Early in the Metal Tech Alley initiative, $50,000 of grant funding from ETSI-BC (formerly Southern Interior Development Trust – SIDIT) and $500,000 from the Province`s Rural Dividend Program, was combined with $347,700 from partner contributions to focus on connecting local metallurgical companies with those in the emerging tech industry to increase environmental sustainability.
Farm Kitchen, a community space in Cranbrook, offers a large commercial kitchen that is rentable by area entrepreneurs, community groups and non-profit organizations. At Farm Kitchen, food based businesses can access the space and equipment they need—from a six-range gas burner to dry storage—to develop, operate and grow successful food-based businesses. Launched by the Community Connections Society of Southeast BC, with a $25,000 grant from ETSI-BC, the Farm Kitchen has been utilized by 19 entrepreneurs to-date.
To assist in the creation of the next phase in the business accelerator program, Accelerate Okanagan approached the Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC, formerly Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust) to secure $25,000 in grant funding. As regional economic development trust, ETSI-BC saw the opportunity to support an emerging sector and support business growth and new job creation.
With a $25,000 grant from the Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC), and additional funders including the Regional District of Central Kootenay, the provincial government, and the Kootenay Employments Services Society, a mobile press was purchased and began to turn agricultural waste into profit.