09.14.16 / Community

Community grants support local initiatives

Supporting community groups making a difference in the Sea-to-Sky region

Grant awarded to women’s centre

When the Howe Sound Women’s Centre in Squamish lost core funding for its Violence is Preventable youth education program, Megan Reynolds, the centre’s executive director, began to explore other options for funding. She heard about FortisBC’s community investment program and was encouraged to apply.

“We were happy to support the centre with a grant for $7,500 because the Violence is Preventable youth education program is about building safe and healthy communities, a priority we’re committed to,” says Elliot Moses, FortisBC’s community and aboriginal relations manager in Squamish.

cheque to Howe Sound Women's Centre

Howe Sound Women’s Centre

The Howe Sound Women’s Centre is a charitable organization dedicated to the prevention of violence against women and support of women, children and youth impacted by violence or abuse. It’s the only service provider in the Sea-to-Sky corridor that offers their unique set of helping services to women and their children.

Megan says the Women’s Centre staff was excited to receive the FortisBC community grant for their Violence is Preventable program because it’s one of their key programs—and they’re passionate about it. “We work a lot with crisis management and crisis support for women, children and youth who have already experienced violence,” she says. “This program is near and dear to our hearts because it’s one of the few ways we get to go out and talk about violence prevention. The program was initiated for us to get ahead of the curve, so to speak.”

cheque for Squamish Garabaldi Highlands Elementary

Program focuses on students in grades six and 10

More than 450 grade six and grade 10 students take part in the program, which is delivered in a classroom setting at schools throughout the Sea-to-Sky Corridor. Its objective is to help children and youth become aware of what an unhealthy relationship looks like so they can make different choices. “We create a safe environment for them to share their experiences and have what can sometimes be sensitive conversations,” says Megan.

Grades six and 10 were specifically chosen for the program because they’re ages when children begin to develop different kinds of relationships. “In grade six, children are becoming more independent, and developing more relationships with their peers,” says Megan. “In grade 10, often more intimate relationships begin to form. We want to support them at both stages.”

Having a presence in schools also helps students become aware of the other services that the Women’s Centre provides. “We talk about the Women’s Centre. If they need additional one-on-one support, they know we’re there,” says Megan.

cheque for Squamish Airhouse Trampoline Academy

Training opportunities for Squamish Nation Youth

Funding support for Airhouse Trampoline Academy will assist in the creation of the Squamish Nations Academy Coaching Program, which will provide training opportunities for Squamish Nation youth.

“Airhouse would like to congratulate FortisBC on receiving its recent Environmental Assessment approvals and praise them on creating the Community Investment program," says Rodney Wilson, Director of Fun, "This grant will allow more local aboriginal and First Nations youth to participate in Airhouse Academy Lesson Programs. At Airhouse our mission is You(th) in Action and we are so excited to be bringing this opportunity to more local youth!”

Helping cadets develop skills through training and competition

By outffiting the local Air Cadet Marksmanship Team, cadets will develop skills through superior training and Olympic-style competition.

“The Squamish Air Cadets is an amazing program for youth in Squamish aged 12-18,: says Jude Goodwin, Squamish Air Cadets, "They learn leadership, first aid, survival and of course all things to do with flight – but there’s also a lot of opportunities through the various cadet programs, competitions and scholarships. Whether they’re out camping or hiking or snowshoeing,  volunteering at a local community event, or excelling in competitions such as marksmanship or public speaking, our cadets are an amazing bunch of kids. With this Fortis community investment, we now have the funds to fully kit our Marksmanship Team. Thank you so much!” 

FortisBC supports the communities where we live and work by investing in a variety of community initiatives that support stronger, healthier BC communities. One of the ways we do this is through our community investment program.  We consider applications for funding from organizations that qualify in one or more of the following categories: safety, education, environment and aboriginal initiatives.

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