The British Columbia government is providing $348,333 so Futurpreneur Canada can support rural and Indigenous young adults in northern B.C. through its ThriveNorth programming, Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, announced today.
The funding is part of more than $10.1 million being awarded to 90 eligible local governments, First Nations and not-for-profit organizations under the BC Rural Dividend program.
Non-profit Futurpreneur Canada provides financing, mentoring and support tools to aspiring business owners aged 18 to 39 years. ThriveNorth lets it expand these offerings through local partnerships and community resources. In British Columbia, partners include Community Futures (Terrace), the Fort St. John & District Chamber of Commerce, the District of Kitimat, Lax Kw’alaams Band, Nisga’a Lisims Government, Northern Savings Credit Union, Northwest Community College and the Prince Rupert & District Chamber of Commerce.
The Rural Dividend program provides grants of up to $100,000 each for single applicants, and up to $500,000 for partnerships to help rural communities stabilize their economies and create long-term local employment.
The program is under review, and the Province is determining how best to distribute the remaining Rural Dividend funds, taking into account the community impacts of this year's wildfire season and other exceptional circumstances.
Rural development activities support government’s commitment to building a strong, sustainable and innovative economy that creates well-paying jobs for all British Columbians.
Oct. 16-20 is Small Business Week in B.C. and Canada. B.C.’s small business sector is a significant economic driver for the province and is showing strong signs of continued growth.
Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Doug Donaldson –
“This new funding means Futurpreneur Canada and its partners can support young entrepreneurs, which, in turn, helps rural communities grow their economies and create jobs – now and for the next generation.”
Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology Bruce Ralston –
“Futurpreneur Canada’s training and mentorship empowers Indigenous youth in rural and northern communities to become entrepreneurs and start their own businesses. By funding programs for young people, our government is ensuring B.C.’s economy remains prosperous for all British Columbians now and into the future.”
- Projects were assessed and approved based on the following criteria:
- Rural communities most in need.
- Improved community resiliency and economic strength.
- Partnership building and enhanced shared prosperity.
- Project feasibility and sustainability.
- Economic impact on rural communities.
- Attracting and retaining youth.
- Innovation in economic development.
Rural Dividend: www.gov.bc.ca/ruraldividend