A Tuff City Spring Fun Day held at the Tofino Community Hall last April brought Tofitian families together and was made possible by a Neighbourhood Small Grant.

Grant opportunities connect West Coast communities

“It’s a great community grant for individuals that have a small idea but a powerful idea that brings people together,” said Brooke Wood.

Have an idea for a project that would bring West Coasters together? There’s a grant for that.

The Clayoquot Biosphere Trust has teamed up with the Westcoast Community Resources Society and the Vancouver Foundation to dish out $4,200 worth of Neighbourhood Small Grants to locals wanting to better their communities.

“It’s a great community grant for individuals that have a small idea but a powerful idea that brings people together,” CBT Neighbourhood Small Grant coordinator Brooke Wood told the Westerly News.

The deadline for applications is Oct. 15 and Wood will be traveling throughout the Coast to encourage locals to put applications forward and help them fill those applications out.

“This is a program for everyone…We want to keep it as simple and easy for people as possible,” she said adding the West Coast boasts communities packed with creative ideas.

“Time will tell, but I’m confident we’re going to receive lots of applications this year.”

This is the second annual appearance of Neighbourhood Small Grants on the West Coast, which saw an abundance of opportunities produced through last year’s granting cycle, including a popular water catchment seminar where locals learned how to capture rain water and use it efficiently. Other projects included a Tuff City Fun Day family event, gardening seminars and a Tonquin Trail cleanup.

“We’re very unique,” Wood said. “The Vancouver Foundation is always really interested in what the West Coast comes up with.” The maximum amount available for each grant is $500.

“It’s really about doing a lot with a little amount of money and bringing people together to celebrate in a positive way,” Wood said.

“We wanted to do this to reach out to more people and broaden our scope within the region. To change up, do different ideas and get more on a grassroots level.”

Wood hopes to see the entire Coast participate.

“To really reach out and broaden the scope to the whole region is a big goal we have this year,” she said “The number one goal of this project is to build community.”

She added studies done by the Vancouver Foundation suggest helping community members secure funding for small, grassroots projects helps combat loneliness and social isolation. “It gets people out,” she said.

“It’s supporting people to get together and break out of their niche, meet new people and try new things.”

Anyone interested in pitching an idea is encouraged to contact Wood at 250-725-2219 or brooke@clayoquotbiosphere.org.