When the going gets tough and supplies can`t be delivered, why not build a local manufacturing facility? That is exactly what Kootenay outdoor gear makers are looking at through a feasibility study funded by ETSI-BC. Find out how these bold Kootenay entrepreneurs are working to turn a supply chain challenge into an economic opportunity.
Here are some regional success stories to inspire your next economic development project.
Labour Shortage Addressed by North Okanagan Immigration Pilot Project
The Vernon area of the Thompson/Okanagan is one of 11 communities in Canada delivering an immigration project designed to bring skilled permanent residents to rural communities and match them with employers who have job vacancies. ETSI-BC contributed $25,000 to the Pilot, which is already filling jobs and providing the region with long-term economic benefits
Lake Country Scenic Sip Trail – Showcasing Hidden Gems Along Hwy 97
The District of Lake County has created a marketing strategy to showcase some of its hidden gems – wineries, tasting rooms, lake view restaurants, fresh local farmgate produce – just off the highway between Vernon and Kelowna. With a $50,000 grant from ETSI-BC, Lake Country was able to activate a key element of their economic development plan by designing a Scenic Sip interactive website complemented by highway billboards and eye-catching wayfinding signage. Through digital and visual route markers, the community hopes to encourage more visitors and tourist to make Lake Country a delightful stop on their travel route.
Into the Woods: Developing Whitewater Resort into a 4-Season Tourism Destination
The Friends of Pulpit Rock Society, a volunteer-driven organization that maintains Nelson-area trails, partnered with the Whitewater Ski Resort to develop a trail network that encourages visiting the area year-round. A $11,470 grant from ETSI-BC helped fund the project. The investment into the area as an all-season destination will economically benefit tourism-related and other businesses in the region.
Small Scale Abattoir in the Columbia Valley Makes a Big Impact
Columbia Valley Abattoir is a small-scale slaughterhouse in Invermere, BC that caters to many valley businesses and has successfully developed strategic partnerships within the supply chain. The project, a vision of the Windermere District Farmers Institute and Livestock Association (WDFI), received a $25,000 grant from ETSI-BC.
Ktunaxa Nation aligns environmental stewardship with economic prosperity.
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.
Creston’s Investment Co-op Links Local Investors with Local Opportunities
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).
Metal Tech Alley Reaching Out to the World
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.
Commercial kitchen supporting local producers in Cranbrook
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.
Accelerate Okanagan, Kelowna BC, RevUp Program
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.