Vancouver gets closer to its greenest city goals with the help of the Vancouver Foundation and Green City Grants. $1.4 million has been allocated to 500 projects. See how the funding program fosters creative solutions & supports local green efforts.
What do a processing plant for independent fishermen, community gardens, bird habitat improvements, and the repurposing of materials found during demolition have in common? They are all ideas that are being explored thanks to the Vancouver Foundation’s Greenest City grants.
Projects Address Greenest City Goals
“Engaging and empowering our residents to take action in the multitude of ways they can is essential,” says City of Vancouver Sustainability Director Amanda Pitre-Hayes. “So that’s why we set up the Greenest City fund with the Vancouver Foundation.”
The Greenest City community grants fund set aside $2 million over four years. The money supported community-led green projects that address one or more of the goals set out in the City of Vancouver’s 2020 Greenest City Action Plan.
“The quality of projects that have been funded since the Greenest City Fund was set up have really been outstanding,” notes Pitre-Hayes. “So far we have distributed $1.4 million, funded about 500 projects, and engaged thousands of citizens in Vancouver.”
Success Stories Inspire Grant Applicants
A recent open house brought grant applicants and past grant recipients together. It was a chance to network, and learn about the grants application process, but also an opportunity to hear some success stories. The Sea to Fork Seafood Processing Plant is on its way to becoming one of those success stories, after the Living Oceans Society received two grants for a total of $47,000, to establish the first independent fish processing plant in the Vancouver region. It’s a facility that would change the way these fishermen do business.
Grant Monies Help Local Fishers Develop Processing Plant Concept
“Most of the time we’re farming out production to different plants around town, trying to each week arrange where a fish is going to get gutted, where it’s going to get frozen, where it’s going to get filleted, where it’s going to get smoked and canned, and it’s just about as much work as the actual fishing,” explains Shaun Strobel of Skipper Otto’s Community Funded Fishery.
Lisa Strobel explains how Skipper Otto’s used their grant.
“The Greenest City grant that we received with the Living Ocean Society, helped us to hire consultants, to help us develop a business plan and a financial model, just to be sure that our processing plant would be feasible and financially viable.”
The processing plant is not a reality yet, but it and many other “green” ideas owe their start to the Greenest City fund.
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