November 26, 2023

November 14, 2023

November 13, 2023

BC Ferries, Charting the Course – A Vision for Coastal Ferries

Transportation, transit and ferry systems around the world are under pressure resulting from the pandemic, population growth, climate change, inflation and other factors. BC’s coastal ferry system is no exception, and BC Ferries is responding with actions to address current operational issues. BC Ferries is also embarking on a long-term transformative journey to reshape our coastal ferry services in response to the evolving needs of the communities we serve. Charting the Course aims to define what is needed to keep people, goods, and services in coastal communities connected and moving through to 2050 and beyond.

Hearing from you is an important part of this initiative to help us build a more sustainable and resilient ferry system. We believe that the coastal ferry service should be a vital component of British Columbia’s extensive transportation network, and your input is invaluable in helping us achieve this.

November 13, 2023

Register here

November 13, 2023

October 30, 2023

October 13, 2023

October 13, 2023

October 11, 2023

October 11, 2023

September 11, 2023

Check out the Sept. 11, 2023 Cortes Currents article on the Conversation Cafes here:

September 3, 2023

August 29, 2023

August 29, 2023

August 22, 2023

Building Healthier Communities Fund 

Coastal Community Credit Union has recently relaunched the BHCF which helps fund long-term initiatives that meet the criteria of sustainability, support for a broad range of people, and visible and meaningful impact in one of our local communities. It now has a bigger budget to support holistic community health through four specific areas of support. They include: 

• Housing 

• Mental health 

• Healthcare 

• Homelessness

Learn more about it here. 

Go to the application portal here. 

August 8, 2023

Richard Andrews First Month as Project Manager of the Village Commons

June 14, 2023


Thinking of doing some skill building? This new grant covers up to $3,500 per person for eligible short-term skills training at public post-secondary institutions… to British Columbians aged 19 years or older – regardless of financial need.

What is the StrongerBC future skills grant program?

The StrongerBC future skills grant is open to British Columbians aged 19 years or older – regardless of financial need – and covers up to $3,500 per person for eligible short-term skills training at public post-secondary institutions.

The grant will help learners access eligible short-term skills training to further their careers, upgrade their skills and enhance their productivity, giving them access to well-paid, high opportunity occupations. Learners can choose from a growing list of more than 400 programs.

June 14, 2023

Free Business Advisory Services for Cortes

Community Futures Central Island is offering a new Regional Business Advisory Service program that can be accessed by businesses in the Strathcona region, which includes Cortes Island.

While this program is largely for businesses and communities impacted by forest policy changes and other impacts to the forest sector, advisors will consider existing businesses on Cortes that are struggling or are seeking assistance to grow.

The Program will:
– support rural businesses and communities
– increase community and regional adaptation, resilience and sustainability; and
– leverage existing local community/organizations to create incremental supports to impacted business and or communities.

Regional Business Advisors will work one on one with entrepreneurs to help them stabilize and increase, as well as if required, identify and diversify revenues streams. Our experience has informed us that often entrepreneurs do not know how to properly prepare for solicitation to banks and funders. We believe that for some entrepreneur’s debt restructuring will also be required. Our advisors will be able to assist companies to prepare for presentations to financial institutions.

Gaining traction in unstable times requires a nimble business model. We also want to assist businesses to reconsider and tweak their current business models and how they may shift or pivot their current model to serve both them and their customers. Our Advisors will support owner/operators in navigating the measures, determine what meets their needs and then assist them to complete applications if necessary. For some, they may be required to exit their current business and our advisors will assist in developing a liquidation/sale strategy and refer them to appropriate targeted programming


Small and medium sized businesses, social enterprises and not for profit organizations.


Our goal is to provide you with practical tools, resources and strategies to help your business become more resilient and successful.


Regional Business Advisors will service rural communities within the Vancouver Island Regional Districts of Cowichan Valley, Nanaimo, Alberni Clayoquot, Comox Valley, Strathcona and Mount Waddington.  Cortes Island is included in this catchment area.


This program is available effective June 1, 2023 – August 31, 2024.

Does it cost anything?

There are no fees associated with participating. Only criteria, you must be a willing and participatory applicant.

How and by Whom?

Our Regional Business Advisors will work one on one with existing businesses to help stabilize and increase, as well as if required, identify and diversify revenues streams. Their activities will be to advise and coach business owners to determine their specific needs and align their strategic direction. Each Advisor brings a wealth of expertise in strategic planning and business development. They can also help identify programming, grants, subsidies and initiatives that are being offered by a myriad of providers from all levels of government and industry. If assistance is required, to aid in the application process, the coach can help or be a conduit to individuals who have sector/industry specific knowledge and expertise.

Apply Now
Complete an application and return by email to – in the subject line type Regional Business Advisory Services Application. Application forms are included in this post, below.

For more information you can contact, call 250-591-7499, or visit

June 12, 2023

The tent is up at the Village Commons!

A big thanks to the tent crew – Amy, Jacques, Colin, Lorrie, Suzanne, Moses, Hugh, Fergus, and Eli – for their work getting this tent up again and ready for community use!

The Village Commons, located behind the radio station in Mansons Landing, can be used for casual gatherings. See below on guidelines for its use.

Free meetings and events at the Village Commons tent can be booked on a first-come first-served basis by scheduling it on the Tideline’s event calendar (3rd column on the right). For private, ticketed events, please contact Kate at

We invite you to use the land according to the following guidelines:


The Village Commons is a space for generative, respectful gathering. We recognize the autonomy and sovereignty of this Land, and strive to be in reciprocal relationship with both the Land and the other beings who live here. This Commons is part of the overlapping traditional and ancestral territory of the toq qaymɩxʷ (Klahoose), ɬəʔamɛn qaymɩxʷ (Tla’amin), ʔop qaymɩxʷ (Homalco) Nations, and ʔayʔaǰuθəm (Ayajuthem) is the traditional language spoken here.

The Village Commons Land is set aside to be shared by everyone, to serve a variety of purposes and needs. While you are on the Land, please take care of the space generously. Think about who might be coming to visit after you. Do what feels right so that children, Elders, and other neighbours can also enjoy being with the Commons safely.

Community Agreements

We invite the community to be with this Land in these ways:

Connect with the Land and offer a gift each time you come here.
Do not harm others, hold yourself responsibly.
To the best of your ability, asking friends and neighbours for help if needed, leave the space tidy and safe for the next use.

While sharing the Commons, we encourage everyone to treat each other respectfully. This means:

Using welcoming and inclusive language
Being respectful and empathetic when it comes to differing viewpoints and experiences
Gracefully accepting constructive criticism and feedback
Assuming the best intentions and goodwill of other users
Holding each other in the highest regard
Addressing conflict openly, directly, and compassionately

This notice is made on behalf of the Cortes Island Community Foundation and Cortes Community Economic Development Association.

For more information, please contact Kate Maddigan at

June 10, 2023

Funding Update

Complete Communities Program

Description: The program supports communities in undertaking assessments to inform land use decision-making, considering housing need, supply, and location; providing transportation options including increased walkability; and making connections to infrastructure investment and servicing decisions.

Eligible Applicants: All local governments (municipalities, regional districts, and the Islands Trust) and modern Treaty First Nations (as defined by the Interpretation Act) in BC

Eligible activities: applicants must select a minimum of three of the four lenses identified in the

Ministry of Housing’s Complete Communities Guide to assess their community completeness:

  • Housing
  • Transportation
  • Daily Needs
  • Infrastructure

DeadlineJune 16, 2023 and January 12, 2024

Funding amount: The Complete Communities program can contribute a maximum of 100% of the cost of eligible activities to a maximum of $150,000. Regional projects can request up to $500,000.

Contact: Local Government Program Services, Union of BC Municipalities (

Infrastructure planning grant program

Description: The Infrastructure Planning Grant Program (Program) assists local governments in developing well planned community infrastructure that will improve public health and safety, encourage resilient communities, protect the natural environment while strengthening local and regional economies.

Eligible Applicants: local government (municipality or regional district). Local governments can submit applications on behalf of improvement districts, or other small water system operators and must include the letter of request from that organization.

Eligible activities: Eligible projects are those that promote sustainable infrastructure. List of examples on the Infrastructure Planning Grant Program Guide (PDF).

DeadlineJuly 12, 2023

Funding amount: a maximum grant amount of $10,000 for each approved project. One hundred percent of the first $5,000 in approved eligible project costs will be paid. Those approved eligible costs over the first $5,000, will be calculated at 50% funding and paid up to a maximum total grant amount of $10,000.

Contact: Local Government Infrastructure and Finance Branch,

Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund

Description: Supports large-scale infrastructure projects to help communities better manage the risks of disasters triggered by natural hazards. The DMAF is aimed at strengthening the resilience of Canadian communities through investments in large-scale infrastructure projects, including natural infrastructure projects, enabling them to better manage the risk associated with current and future natural hazards, such as floods, wildfires and droughts.

Eligible applicants:

  • A municipal or regional government established by – or under –provincial or territorial statute;
  • An Indigenous governing body
  • An Indigenous Development Corporation
  • A not-for-profit organization whose central mandate is to improve Indigenous outcomes.

Eligible activities: Eligible infrastructure projects under the DMAF include new construction of public infrastructure and/or modification or reinforcement of existing public infrastructure including natural infrastructure that prevent, mitigate or protect against the impacts of climate change, disasters triggered by natural hazards, and extreme weather. Projects must have a minimum of $1M in total eligible costs to be considered for funding.

Deadline: Intake open from January 16, 2023 until July 19, 2023 at 3:00 PM (EDT).

Funding amount: Not specified.

Contact: Infrastructure Canada,

Age-Friendly Communities Grant

Description: to help local and indigenous governments achieve the vision of building age-friendly communities.

Eligible applicants: The following government organizations are eligible to apply:

  • First Nations Bands
  • First Nations Tribal Councils
  • Métis Chartered Communities
  • Municipalities
  • Regional Districts
  • Self-Governing First Nations

Eligible activities: Two funding streams:

  • Stream 1 Planning: To complete an age-friendly assessment and develop an age-friendly action plan.
  • Stream 2 Projects: to implement age-friendly action(s)/projects identified in the age-friendly community assessment and action plan.

Deadline: July 28, 2023

Funding amount: Stream 1: up to $25,000 and Stream 2: up to $15,000.

Contact: BC Healthy Communities Society,, (250) 590-8442.

BC Community Gaming Grants

Description: Provides $140 million annually to not-for-profit organizations throughout B.C., to support their delivery of ongoing programs and services that meet the needs of their communities.

Eligible Applicants: Not-for-profit organizations providing programs or services of direct benefit to the broader community. Details provided in Sections 3 and 4 of the Community Gaming Grants: Program Guidelines (PDF, 1.9MB)

Eligible activities: A program may be eligible if it:

  • Has been delivered for a minimum of 12 months at the time of application and has incurred cash expenses over the past 12 months.
  • Is directly delivered by the applicant organization.
  • The applicant organization is responsible for program expenditures.
  • Funding for the same or similar programs will only be provided to a single organization that directly delivers the program and is responsible for program expenditures.
  • Delivers an ongoing service, activity or series of activities to the community.
  • Demonstrates accessibility and inclusivity.
  • Programs delivered for less than 12 months may be considered.

Deadline: There are three categories with upcoming deadlines – Public Safety: Apply between July 1 and August 31. Environment: Apply between July 1 and August 31. Human and Social Services: Apply between August 1 and November 30.

Funding amount: Local organizations: up to $125,000 per year, Regional/Provincial organizations: up to $250,000 per year.

Contact: Community Gaming Grants Branch,

Declaration Act Engagement Fund

Description: The primary purpose of the DAEF is to support the implementation of the Declaration Act Action Plan and commitments to align provincial legislation with the UN Declaration. Funding can also be used by First Nations to engage on a government-to-government basis with the Province on other strategic, policy, and legislative initiatives.

Eligible Applicants: B.C. First Nations under the Indian Act, B.C. Modern Treaty Nations, and Self-Governing Nations

Eligible activities: Program funding can only be used to cover costs that are directly related to the work, engagement and consultation with the Province of B.C in the implementation of the Declaration Act Action Plan, alignment of Provincial laws with the UN Declaration, and to support other strategic, policy, and legislative engagements that evolve from enhanced government to government work and relations with the Province of B.C.

Deadline: The Declaration Act Engagement Fund will accept new applications during New Relationship Trust’s annual funding cycle between May and December each year. Applicants will only have to apply once to the program.

Funding amount: The total funding cap over 4 years per Nation is $1,040,000.


Federal Rural Transit Solutions Fund

Description: The Rural Transit Solutions Fund is the first federal fund to target the development of transit solutions in rural and remote communities. Launched in 2021, the Fund provides $250 million in federal funding over 5 years to support the development of locally driven transit solutions that will help people living in rural communities get to work, school, appointments, and to visit loved ones.

Eligible Applicants:

  • Municipalities, local and regional governments established under provincial or territorial statute, including local service districts;
  • Provinces and territories (only for capital projects);
  • Public sector bodies that are established by or under provincial or territorial statute, or by regulation, or are wholly-owned by a province, territory, municipal or regional government;
  • Indigenous governing bodies;
  • Federally or provincially incorporated not-for-profit organizations whose mandate is to improve Indigenous outcomes, organizations serving Indigenous communities living in urban centers and First Nations living off-reserve;
  • Indigenous development corporations; and,
  • Federally or provincially incorporated not-for-profit organizations.

Eligible activities: There are two program streams depending on the nature of their project:

  • Planning and Design Projects stream: Through this stream, eligible applicants can seek grants of up to $50,000 in support of communities’ projects to plan and design new or expanded transit solutions for their communities.
  • Capital Projects stream: Through this stream, eligible applicants can seek contributions of up to $3 million to help cover the capital costs of a new or expanded transit solution (e.g., purchase of vehicles or digital platforms), and up to $5 million to support zero-emission transit solutions (e.g., for the purchase of a zero-emission vehicles).

Deadline: continuous intake of the Rural Transit Solutions Fund of the Capital Projects stream is open.

Funding amount: Funding depends on which stream is applied for.

Contact: For any inquiries you may have about the Rural Transit Solutions Fund or the application process, please contact or call toll free at 1-833-699-2280.

Regional Innovation Ecosystems in British Columbia – PacifiCan

Description: aims to create, grow and nurture inclusive regional ecosystems that support business needs throughout the innovation continuum, and foster an entrepreneurial environment conducive to innovation, growth and competitiveness.

Eligible applicants: open to not-for-profit organizations that support businesses, innovators and entrepreneurs, for start-up, growth, productivity, technology commercialization, technology adoption, export and investment attraction.

Eligible activities: Activities that support a regional innovation ecosystem to respond to a specific challenge, opportunity, or market need or demand related to business scale-up and productivity, with emphasis on:

  • Technology commercialization
  • Business scale-up
  • Productivity improvement
  • Ecosystem capacity building
  • Business acceleration and incubation

Deadline: Ongoing until annual funding allocation has been reached.

Funding amount: Not specified. Potential funding recipients are expected to have secured all non-PacifiCan requested project financing (typically, at least 50%) before applying.

Contact: contact us directly at one of our local offices or by calling 1-888-338-9378.

CMHC – Housing Accelerator Fund (not yet open)

Description: Fund provides incentive funding to local governments encouraging initiatives aimed at increasing housing supply. It also supports the development of complete, low-carbon and climate-resilient communities that are affordable, inclusive, equitable and diverse.

Eligible Applicants: Local governments in Canada with delegated authority over land use planning and development approvals, including First Nations, Métis and Inuit governments, can apply. Regional districts, provinces or territories are eligible to apply if there isn’t a municipal-level authority.

Eligible activities: Incentive funding can be used for prescribed uses, which fall under 4 categories:

  • investments in Housing Accelerator Fund action plans
  • investments in affordable housing
  • investments in housing-related infrastructure
  • investments in community-related infrastructure that supports housing

Deadline: portal is scheduled to open at the end of June 2023

Funding amount: Not specified – Program total Is $4 billion and will run till 2026-27.

Contact: Can sign up for updates on the Fund webpage.

Note: Two streams for applications: large/urban (for communities with population of 10,000+) and small/rural/Indigenous (for indigenous communities or non-indigenous communities with population under 10,000).

B.C. Maritime Industries Infrastructure Modernization and Expansion Grant Program (not yet open)

Description: Projects must contribute directly to the modernization and development of regional infrastructure for boat or ship dry dock, or refit and maintenance facilities.

  • Projects that increase in capacity and capability for the new build of smaller coastal craft will also be considered.
  • Projects should increase competitiveness for local businesses to compete for federal and commercial contracts, providing increased opportunities for British Columbians.
  • Projects should provide widespread economic and environmental benefits in line with StrongerBC Economic Plan of clean and inclusive growth and the legislated emissions reduction targets in the CleanBC Roadmap to 2030.

Eligible Applicants: Eligible applicants consist of businesses and for-profit organizations of all sizes (not-for-profit organizations are not eligible) that, as of the date of application to the program;

  • Operate in the marine, maritime and/or ship building and repair sector.
  • Have been operating in B.C. for at least 24 months.
  • Have an existing footprint in the province of British Columbia.
  • Can demonstrate being a viable operation through positive cash flow or have net positive assets.
  • Are not currently preparing the business for closure, dissolution, bankruptcy or sale.

Organizations can apply individually, or in collaboration with other eligible applicants, if the primary applicant is an eligible entity.

Eligible activities: projects that increase ability of B.C. boat and shipyards to compete for federal and commercial contracts through modernization and expansion of;

  • existing boat and shipyard equipment and facilities including, but not limited to, overhead cranes, hydraulic lifts, welding machines and material handling equipment, rail lines, pumps or valves, etc.
  • regional dry dock or wharfage infrastructure for both small to large domestic and deep-sea boats and ships to receive vessel life-cycle upgrades, planned overhaul work, scheduled dry docking for class certificate renewal, unplanned maintenance or any type of alongside work.
  • infrastructure for construction of smaller boats.

Deadline: To be determined. Visit this “How to apply” page for instructions on how to apply when they are released.

Funding amount: Non-repayable funding contributions are provided through two capital investment streams,

  1. Stream 1 – 50% of capital costs up to $500,000 for equipment and facility modernization OR new small vessel construction infrastructure.
  2. Stream 2 – 25% of project capital costs up to $5 million for dry dock and wharfage expansion for boat and ship overhaul, refit, maintenance, and repair infrastructure.

Contact: Association of British Columbia Marine Industries

June 10, 2023

Rural Inter-Community Transportation Study

Cortes Islanders will be familiar with efforts over the years to explore improvements in transportation options for residents and visitors, while reducing the Island’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions.   This new study has just been announced by the province to address rural Inter-Community transportation.  For Cortes Islanders, this is mainly about finding affordable and reliable solutions to the challenge of crossing Quadra Island without a personal vehicle to access essential goods and services not available on Cortes.

These consultations are being held during the month of June and are intended to eventually help inform the design of a new micro-granting program, in order to fund projects prioritized by communities through this study.

With funding eventually available to support the outcomes of this study, this is a promising initiative for our island, and I hope you will participate! Besides the survey, you can also participate through in-person community sessions, and online/virtual sessions.

Read below for more about this project, and for much more follow this link:

What is This Study About?
Island Coastal Economic Trust (the Trust) and Vancouver Island Economic Alliance (VIEA), with funding provided by the Province, are exploring passenger transportation between communities on Vancouver Island and parts of coastal B.C., including the Sunshine Coast.

The focus is on passenger transportation connections between communities, especially in rural and remote areas as well as the islands, that are either not currently served or are underserved by buses, ferries, water taxis, float planes, community shuttles, or other ways of getting around. Connections between transportation modes (e.g., ferry to bus) are also included. This study will look at what exists today with community-to-community transportation, will consult on the challenges and barriers, and will bring forward the opportunities to better connect communities. The purpose is to provide the provincial government with information to help inform future policy and investment decisions in the region.

It should also be noted that the Greater Victoria area and existing transit services within communities are not part of this study.

With this in mind, the Trust and VIEA are hoping to hear from you on what has been seen and felt when it comes to current community-to-community transportation and other such issues through an online survey. The survey is available from now until June 30, 2023.


Why is it Important to Participate
Hearing from you and others in communities will help this study in understanding the following:

– What are the challenges when it comes to existing passenger transportation among communities?
– What is important to address when it comes to transportation, such as safety and reliability?
– What needs are not being met today, in being able to transit between your community and other communities?
– What can be done to improve the means of, and access to, transportation between your community and other communities?
– To recognize the time being put toward the survey, five $100 VISA gift cards will be awarded at random to those who complete it by the deadline (June 30, 2023).

How else can I participate in this study?

Besides the online survey, facilitated sessions will be held with First Nations, local governments, industry, local research organizations, and community groups across Vancouver Island and in the Sunshine Coast. These sessions will be by invitation. If you would like to be included in a session, please email:

For Cortes Island residents, the closest in-person community session is Campbell River on June 23, 2023. The online session for Rural Island Communities is on Tuesday, June 27, 2023 from 1 to 4 pm. 

Is there an incentive to participate?

Your views and suggestions will help inform future strategies along with initiatives aimed at improving community-to-community transportation. We are also offering the chance to win one of five $100 VISA gift cards for those who take part in the online survey by the deadline (June 30, 2023).

Is there financial support for participating?

There are funds available to help cover travel costs for Indigenous people located in remote areas to attend the in-person engagement sessions. For more information, please email Indigenous participants will be offered an honorarium for participating in these engagement sessions.

Kate Maddigan is the Economic Development Officer for the Cortes Community Economic Development Association/CCEDA. Please reach her at, and for more on CCEDA visit their website at

June 5, 2023

That’s a Wrap! Takeaways from the 2023 RIEP Forum

Putting the Pieces Together for Healthy Rural Island Communities

Over 125 islanders, stakeholders, allies, and representatives from all levels of government gathered at The Haven Centre—located on the traditional and unceded territories of the Snuneymuxw First Nations on Gabriola Island—from April 25-27 to ‘put the pieces together” for BC’s rural island communities at the 2023 RIEP Forum.

It was the first such in-person gathering since the inaugural Forum event in 2019, which led to the formation of the Rural Islands Economic Partnership Society (RIEP). Virtual Forums were held in 2021 and 2022, along with four virtual ‘Connection Cafes’.

At the 2022 Forum, the focus was on ‘Connect, Reflect, Moving Forward’, and was notable for its outcome—the creation of the Rural Islands Values Framework, inspired by the Doughnut Economics model (which you can read about here).

The Rural Islands Values Framework is a set of intentions for what’s needed for BC’s rural islands to be sustainable. Developed by and for rural islanders, it serves as a starting point for a common approach to addressing the present and future challenges of BC’s rural islands, one that is rooted in social and environmental responsibility. It is also one which would provide a basis of respect for each island’s individuality, while also serving commonalities of the islands as a whole.

This is what served as the starting point for the RIEP 2023 Forum – where to go next with both the Framework …islanders and allies – and as RIEP – what could we achieve together, and without delay?

Connect + Reflect + ACT!

In pre-Forum 2023 promotions, you may have seen promotions using the tagline, “Connect, Reflect, and ACT”. The first two were easy because, as with most in-person conferences, the delegates, speakers, sponsors, and event hosts—in this case representing over 15 islands, local businesses, community NGOs and activists, and several government bodies—were able to connect in meaningful ways and reflect on what had brought us back together (or in many cases, together for the first time).

The third call-to-action was ‘ACT’—the idea that the Forum could transform the ideas, energy, and intentions incubated over the 3 days into actionable expressions of island values.

That’s exactly what happened. Attendees in 2023 Forum Action Labs formulated ways to activate initiatives related to:

  1. Rural Housing Policies That Work
  2. Engaging Shared Services as a Means for Building Local Economic Capacity
  3. Fostering Travel As A Force For Good
  4. Incorporating Islands Style Climate Adaptation Best Practices
  5. Adopting Circular Economy Methods To Address Food Sector ‘Take-Make-Waste’ Streams
  6. Securing Regional District Economic Development Staff To Serve the Islands In their District

These six resolution statements can take the shape of aspirations, requests, demands; however, what they say is grounded in collaboration, through a rural islands and reconciliation lens, and between visionaries, innovators, change makers and community organizers from organizations focused on regenerative economic development, rural housing, Indigenous business, local food, and destination management, and more.

You can read more about these Resolutions here.

So What Happens Next?

In many ways, it’s up to you—along with the RIEP Board, members, and volunteers, supported by our small staff team—to stand ready to breathe life into these Resolutions.

Whether it’s due to population fluctuations, climate impacts, changes in land use, access to vital services or issues of significance to us all, we believe the RIEP movement serves as a platform for collaboration and collective action.


To make a positive difference Islander movers and shapers must play an active role in championing rural island values by making a commitment to have ‘skin in the game’.
That’s what these resolutions are all about.

We are forming Working Groups to refine content and propose a action timeline for:

  • Moving the Resolutions forward through a intentional collaborative process, that will engage RIEP members, local community organizations, allies – local and regional NGOs, government, and private industry; and
  • Seeking ways to secure financial, human resource, legislative and regulatory support to make fundamental changes in how BC’s rural islands navigate the next few years and decades of change.

An Opportunity To Keep The Islands Vibe Alive & Flourishing

If this sounds like an opportunity for our all islands community to get ahead of our present and future challenges – and if challenges sound like opportunities to you – then we invite you to join RIEP and help make these resolutions to become a reality.

  • RIEP Membership supports this ongoing work and opens up opportunities to participate going forward—join RIEP now, for as little as $25/yr.
  • Learn more about the Resolutions, the process going forward, share ideas and ask questions at a special Connection Cafe on the 2023 RIEP Forum Resolutions—Thursday, June 8th, 6:007:30 PM – REGISTER NOW!

May 11, 2023

Funding Opportunities and Circular Economy

Circular Economy Webinar Series

The Vancouver Island Coast Economic Developers Association (VICEDA) has been working on a Circular Economy Accelerator Project and the results will be presented in a series of webinars focused on different sectors. The program provides hands-on support to businesses north of the Malahat and on the Sunshine Coast who seek to adopt circular economy principles, reduce waste and emissions, increase revenue, and develop innovative practices. The webinar series is comprised of four free online presentations – three industry-specific workshops that will cover how businesses in the industry can incorporate circular principles into their operations and the steps involved, and one workshop for local government  that will conclude the Accelerator Program pilot by showcasing business transformations and key trends and opportunities. The workshops are as follows:

  1. Fostering a Circular Economy in Tourism and Hospitality  |  May 17, 10-11 am
  1. Fostering a Circular Economy in Construction  |  May 31, 10-11 am
  1. Fostering a Circular Economy in Food & Beverage Processing  |  June 14, 10-11 am
  1. How Local Government Can Support a Circular Economy  |  June 28, 10-11:30 am

This program is delivered by Vancouver Island Coast Economic Developers Association and Synergy Foundation with support from Island Coastal Economic Trust and regional VICEDA partners: City of Campbell River – Local GovernmentCity of Nanaimo Local GovernmentCowichan Valley Regional DistrictGabriola Island Chamber of CommerceMunicipality of North CowichanCity of Port Alberni Local Government, and Sunshine Coast Regional Economic Development Organization.

Funding Update

 1. BC Arts Council – Arts-Based Community Development

The Project Assistance: Arts-Based Community Development program supports organizations to engage professional artists in the development and delivery of projects that provide arts-based community development impacts and benefits to a specified community. Through collaborative, community-based, arts-centred activities, these projects provide a tangible and active understanding of arts and

culture as a path to health, well-being, human dignity, and social transformation.

  • Eligible Applicants: All applicants are encouraged to confirm their eligibility and the eligibility of their project with a Program Advisor prior to applying. All applicants must:
    • Be a professional or community arts organization working in collaboration with a specified community OR Be a community organization whose focus is not arts and culture, working in collaboration with a specified community OR Be an Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, Métis) community organization or Indigenous government in B.C. that offers dedicated arts and culture activities, and working in collaboration with a specified community. Refer to the program guide for more eligibility information.
  • Deadline: deadline is 11:59 p.m on May 17, 2023.
  • Maximum Funding Amount: There is no maximum request amount, but A-BCD grants typically range from $15,000 to $30,000
  • NOTE: Applications are submitted through the Grant Management System. New applicants must register and create a profile in the online system. Once the registration request is submitted, it may take up to four business days to process your request.
  • Contact information:  Program Advisors can be contacted 250-978-9839 |, 236-478-2550
  • Program guide and more information can be found on the BC Arts Council website at
  • Additional BC Arts Council grants have deadlines in May 2023 and can be found here  Please check them out and share with your networks!

Canadian Council of Arts – Creating, Knowing and Sharing: The Arts and Cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples

The Long-Term Projects component of Creating, Knowing and Sharing funds First Nations, Inuit and Métis professional artists, cultural carriers, arts/cultural professionals, groups, collectives and arts/culture organizations. Grants provide support for any combination of eligible Creating, Knowing and Sharing activities for projects lasting more than 1 year, up to 3 years.

  • Eligible Applicants: First Nations, Inuit and Métis professional artists; First Nations, Inuit and Métis arts/cultural professionals; First Nations, Inuit and Métis cultural carriers; First Nations, Inuit and Métis groups; First Nations, Inuit and Métis for-profit organizations that have been in operation for at least 2 years; First Nations, Inuit and Métis not-for-profit organizations not currently receiving core funding

 2. BC Investment Agriculture Foundation- Perennial Crop Renewal Program

The Perennial Crop Renewal Program (PCRP) is a multi-commodity program that provides cost-shared funding that will be available to BC-based perennial crop producers to remove unproductive, diseased, or unmarketable cultivars; and to adopt growing systems that are better suited to environmental conditions and market demands, based on sector-specific opportunities. Funding will also be available to perennial crop associations and stakeholder groups to conduct sector development projects that evaluate or define agronomic and market opportunities. The PCRP will provide as much as $15 million to support multiple sectors with potential agronomic and market opportunities. Funding will help farmers adapt to environmental and market conditions by supporting the removal, diversification or planting of perennial crops, ensuring British Columbians enjoy local produce for years to come.

  • Eligible Applicants:
    • Stream 1: Sector Development Projects – BC perennial food crop industry association or sector stakeholder group.
    • Stream 2: Removal Projects – BC perennial food crop producer. The applicant must be the owner or lessee of the land.
    • Stream 3: Sector-Specific Planting Projects – BC perennial food crop producer. The applicant must be the owner or lessee of the land to be planted.
  • Deadline: Application intake opened April 28th and are accepted on a continuous basis until funding is fully committed. The review dates for each application batch for the 2023/24 fiscal year is as follows:
    • The first date for review is May 25, 2023*  (if a high volume of applications is received prior to May 25, IAF will review applications on an earlier date to expedite funding)
    • Subsequent review dates are: June 30, 2023, July 31, 2023, July 31, and November 30, 2023
  • Maximum Funding Amount:
    • Stream 1: Sector Development Projects – Max $100K with 100% funding
    • Stream 2: Removal Projects – Max $100K ($5000 per acre)
    • Stream 3: Sector-Specific Planting Projects – Max 300K with 75% funding
  • Contact information:
  • Applications and more details for the Perennial Crop Renewal Program are available online:

3.  Build Your Own Future Program – Business Skills for Technicians and Trades

Mill tradespeople and technicians can access specialized entrepreneurship training and coaching to gain the foundational business skills they need to start and grow their own business. Through a $2.95-million grant to Hubspace, the new Build Your Own Future (BYOF) program will provide foundational business skills to prepare participants to start and grow their own businesses. The program will include training in finance, marketing and sales, operations, project management, health and safety, customer service, leadership, and diversity. In addition to offering participants intensive and customized support for their business startups, those who complete the training are eligible for a $5,000 grant to cover qualified business startup expenses.

  • Deadline – Continuous. The first workshop series is happening in Houston, BC, from May 29th to June 2nd (attendance can be virtual or in person).
  • Contact information – Program staff can be reached at or (250) 563-2663 and visit for more information.
  • One pager attached.

 4. StrongerBC Future Skills Grant

The grant will help learners access eligible short-term skills training to further their careers, upgrade their skills and enhance their productivity, giving them access to well-paid, high opportunity occupations. Learners can choose from a growing list of more than 400 programs and start training in September 2023.

  • Eligible Applicants: The StrongerBC future skills grant is open to British Columbians aged 19 years or older – regardless of financial need.
  • Deadline: Registration for the September semester is open now.
  • Maximum Funding Amount: covers up to $3,500 per person for eligible short-term skills training at public post-secondary institutions.
  • Contact information: Program staff can be reached at
  • Program examples: There are programs on Marketing in the Digital Economy (through NIC), Office and Clerical Training (through NIC), Web Design for Small Business Owners (through VIU), Environmental Monitoring for Construction Projects (through VIU), Event Management (through VIU), Business Administration Essentials Micro-Credential (online at Royal Roads),
  • Learn more

Other Updates:

  • Province’s new StrongerBC: Future Ready Action Plan has been launched (press release).
  • The Declaration Act Engagement Fund will help support First Nations’ involvement in efforts to implement the Declaration Act Action Plan and align provincial laws with the UN Declaration, as required under the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (Declaration Act). The fund will help First Nations offset costs associated with provincial engagement on the implementation of the Declaration Act. The flexible fund could support staffing, training, community-level meetings and other resources required to enhance government-to-government work. The one-time $200-million fund will be administered by the Indigenous-led New Relationship Trust and be available to all First Nations in B.C. (see press release).

May 9, 2023


The Cortes Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA) recently hired Kate Maddigan as its new Economic Development Officer (EDO). 

Colin Funk, the President of CCEDA, explained, “I have known Kate pretty much the entire time I’ve been on Cortes, I think I’m coming up to my 10th summer here. I’ve been on a few boards with her when I was active with Friends of Cortes Island (FOCI). We live pretty close together in the south end of the island. So like many, we bump into each other at the store or on the trails and such.”

Cortes Currents asked Maddigan about some of the work she has done in the community.

“I’m working for the ambulance station, but that will be my daytime job.”

“I did work for DFO for quite a few years up in the Yukon, and through that  I came to understand government culture better than anywhere. So when I’m writing a grant or something, I understand the brain of a bureaucrat. It really helps because you need to be able to speak their language and not everybody can do that.”

“I have written a lot of grants, and then it turns into a project management position because I know the project so well”.

“The Cortes Community Forest Cooperative approached me to write a grant with their value added project, and then I became the project manager when the grant was successful. I’ve also done some work for the partnership with the skills training of forestry workers a year and a half ago, I wrote the grant, the grant was successful and I became the project manager.” 

“I did some work writing grants for the Cortes Island Streamkeepers and help them with their fundraising strategy.”

“I’ve done a lot of work for FOCI just being on the board of directors for 10 years, and felt that my time  there was done, and CCEDA was looking for a grant writer.  So I jumped in and  I’ve done some project management for CCEDA along with all the grant writing.”

Cortes Transportation Committee (2017) Left to right: Sonya Friesen, Don Tennant, Kate Maddigan, Max Thaysen & Director Anderson. – Courtesy Noba Anderson

CF: “She’s got a deep sense of Cortes, having been a resident for many years. She’s been in the nonprofit/ social profit sector for a huge amount of time and, I think more than anybody on Cortes, has a really good understanding of the groups – whether it’s groups that are dealing with the environment, economic or social education. That’s really important because many of us sometimes just have a singular focus and she’s very much pan-Island, so that’s super important.” 

“The other thing too is she just has some remarkable skills in terms of being a real strategic thinker, and a visionary and then the ability to get things done. That’s unique because most of us are either big thinkers, dreamers, but we couldn’t tie our shoes effectively. Others can get lots of things done, but aren’t necessarily working on the right thing or the appropriate context. She’s got this whole brain approach. Kate can go from big picture and then very quickly understand what’s needed to put that forward.” 

“She’s got a wonderful personality and is really responsive to listening to people and following up on, helping us achieve our aspirations, our dreams. When you’re working in the type of work we do in the nonprofit sector and volunteer sector, it’s all about relationship. We’re doing stuff that sometimes is a surprise, or unexpected, or a challenge and quite often with limited resources. So the relationship side of things is really, really important. LIke many others, I just so enjoy being around her.”  

KM: “If you wanted to get into each of the areas that I’m interested  in working on, worker housing is one of them.  I have approached the Cortes Housing Society about this before, and they’re all about Rainbow Ridge, which is a fantastic project, but it’s a very long-term project. What are the more short-term things that we can do to help housing?”  

CC: You’re talking about looking for worker housing and they are pretty well maxed out at Rainbow Ridge.

KM: “Yes, I think that’s why they can’t really consider those shorter term housing solutions that I was talking about. This is something that CCEDA can maybe help with.”

“I’m really good at just stealing ideas from other places, so that I don’t have to recreate the wheel. I think that there’s a lot of value in seeing what the Southern Gulf Islands are doing with their Housing Now Registry. I’m trying to get in touch with the person that’s organizing that, so just to get some ideas and see if it would really work here because that’s just  a good short-term solution.  Also at the RIEP forum we talked about a  speculation tax for empty houses. There have been some initiatives to try and encourage homeowners who don’t use housing that they own on a year round basis to encourage them to use the housing for locals.” 

CC: “As I understand it, the hesitation from property owners is that  a number have had renters who maybe have trashed their house, or they’ve just been unpleasent tenants. A number of potential landlords are hesitant because they’ve heard of these incidents, and they don’t want the hassle themselves.” 

KM: “I think there are some landowners, perhaps homeowners, who are interested in renting out a room or spot on their land, but they’re hesitant to put it out there publicly that they would consider that, and perhaps the registry can be a middle person to provide that kind of support and also provide information to homeowners about what they can do to prevent problems with tenants, how to choose a tenant etc. I think I can see that being difficult for some homeowners, and so I would like to explore options to help them feel more comfortable renting to somebody.” 

“In 2017, when I was with FOCI, we partnered with a consultant out of Victoria and did the transportation demand study for Cortes. The gap that we weren’t able to address, if we had one here on Cortes or on Quadra, is operating budgets.” 

“I was working with the Community Bus Coalition, which is a little ad hoc group made up of a bunch of islands (Galliano, Gabriola, Bowen).  A really effective group. They were basically sending briefing notes to the transportation minister to try and get  more support for community buses. We all pay taxes into the BC transit system, but do we all benefit from that? No, we don’t. The rural areas are really left out of that.” 

“It’s not official, but my source tells me there is an announcement coming up that will actually advance a lot of these ideas for rural areas on Vancouver Island. So I’m really excited to work on that for CCEDA as well.” 

“Another area is business mentorship and skills training. This  came up through my work with the Village Commons. We have received a bunch of funding to advance the Village Commons and part of that funding includes business mentorship. The Village Commons  is intended to provide gathering space and also commercial space for vendors and local entrepreneurs. We don’t have the office, retail, studio space. That was identified as a gap in the local economic action plan of CCEDAs. Now we’ve got the funding, so I will be helping with that.”

“I’m interested in advancing the work that Filipe Figuera started when he was CCEDA’s coordinator last year. He was creating a bookkeeping program for locals and  there was a lot of people that signed up for that.  I would really love to take what Filipe did and advance it more because he did some good work with that.”

“There’s other skills training that we could do. I’ve worked with the skills training funds before when I did the forestry skills training.” 

“We’re going to be releasing the Value Added Wood Processing recommendations for Cortes Island at 7 AM, Monday, May 15 in Manson’s Hall. That project is going to end and I’m going to be helping the Community Forest Co-Op advance those recommendations.” 

“We want to update the Local Economic Action Plan (LEAP) for Cortes. That LEAP report is about five years old now, and it can  serve as a quasi official community plan but we do need to continually check in with the community about where they wan to go with economic development on the island.” 

“This is a team approach.  Colin Funk is the President on the CCEDA board, and along with the other board members including Amy Robertson and Barend Van der Vorm – great people, I really need them – is amazing at helping direct my activities in this role.”

“I think that Colin was really instrumental in spearheading the local economic action plan, and I refer to LEAP quite a bit in any grants that I’m writing.”

“When you are looking for evidence of what the community wants, and funders really look for that, you need to provide evidence of what the community wants. That’s why we do these public engagements. They’re really important.”

“Some people are a little bit frustrated, we put all this energy into these reports, and what do they do? They sit on the shelf. Well, no, that’s not actually correct. People like me and other people who are trying to advance these projects, absolutely need those reports and those community engagements to direct our actions. It’s not what Kate wants, it’s what the community wants. So updating LEAP is another one.”

“Climate Action – That was on the list in that recent public announcement of this position. There’s some gaps on the island , a lot of climate action isn’t being initiated.”

“At the RIEP  forum last week, I met one of the authors of the climate action document for Salt Spring and that’s through Transition Salt Spring. It’s an amazing group. Go on the website. They’re doing amazing things and so is ICAN on Quadra. I love what those guys do with climate action, water securityfood security and the transportation announcement that’s coming up is going to be a really great thing to do for climate action as well.” 

“Regenerative tourism – There’s so many things we could do.  Getting people out of their cars is a big one. Having people come over to have  tourist experiences on Cortes on the e-bike for example.  I was recently involved with the museum who are about to launch their Garden and Studio Tour, and I just kind of threw it out there, ‘Why don’t you advertise it as an amazing e-bike experience and give people ideas of where they can rent an e-bike.”

“We’re in touch with Jack over on Quadra. He’s got e-bikes for rent at Island Cycle.  There’s so many things that we could do to have experiences over here that don’t take away from the community. Experiences that actually support the community, and relieve ferry pressure.” 

CC: “Last year I was hearing  about a cycle trail that went through Cortes, through Quadra, down to Campbell River, over to Comox, over to Powell River, to Lund, and back to Cortes. it’s called the North Salish Cycle Route, but I haven’t heard anything about that since.” 

KM: “I haven’t heard that, sounds amazing though.” 

“This whole idea is fashioned off of the Farm Cycle Tour in the Comox Valley. it’s promoting the very same thing that we’re trying to do here on the island for the Garden and Studio tour. It’s just great that we have so many people with e-bikes these days because it does offer some new opportunities for people, for tourist experiences that, again, support the community instead of taking away from it.” 

“I’m looking forward to coming up with more ideas to stimulate regenerative tourism on Cortes.”

“Another thing on that list was the Village Commons and how CCEDA can help advance that development. As you know the new owners of the Village Commons land is the Cortes Foundation, and we have agreed to be active partners in that development.  I’ve been involved with the Village Commons development quite a bit in the past couple years, and so I think it’s important to contribute to the furthering of that project.  It’s  a transfer of information, ideas and energy that CCEDA can support the foundation with.” 

CC: “There’s also strengthening partnerships with nonprofits and the Klahoose First Nation.” 

“CCEDA is going to continue to be involved with the social profit network. There’s a in-person gathering coming up on Tuesday, June 20 at Hollyhock and we’re going to be involved in that.”

Klahoose First Nation – through the Village Commons, we’ve included a welcome pole in that project. I started talking with Chief Steven Brown about that, and how to really bring that incredible cultural connection to the Village Commons and to downtown Manson’s Landing. I’m really looking forward to being involved in that and, I think it’s just going to be a really great way to try and develop further working relationships with the Klahoose.”  

“Also the Value Added Project will involve work with the Klahoose.  We’ve already met with Kevin Peacey about how the Forestry Co-op can support value added in partnership with the Klahoose. I look forward to seeing where that goes too.”

“I just wanted to say  the title of this position is  Economic Development Officer,  I am not really wild about the title, but there are EDOs, it’s called an EDO –  Economic Development Officer – all over the place. I really look forward to connecting with other EDOs that have been hired across the region  and supporting each other and sharing ideas and so on for our communities.”


May 8, 2023

CCEDA hires a new Economic Development Officer

CCEDA hires a new Economic Development Officer

The Cortes Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA) is pleased to announce that Kate Maddigan has been hired as its new Economic Development Officer (EDO) for a 2-year term. Kate brings extensive experience in community development work to this new position for Cortes Island, and has advanced many valuable local initiatives including: Village Commons development; value-added wood product business development; skills training for forestry workers; secondary education solutions for island youth; and many others.

The position was funded by the Province of British Columbia’s Rural Economic Diversification and Infrastructure Program (REDIP), through the Economic Capacity stream. Other coastal communities receiving REDIP’s Economic Capacity funds include Port Alice, Port Renfrew, Tofino, Ucluelet, Sc’ianew Beecher Bay First Nation, Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ Ucluelet First Nation, Port McNeill, Sointula, and others.

CCEDA is committed to taking a “community economic development” approach with this new position, one that is holistic, community-driven, and focused on generating greater well-being and prosperity for all Islanders. A special focus of the position will be to assist existing and new businesses with identifying opportunities and resources, along with helping locals gain the necessary skills needed to create a thriving and sustainable local workforce.

Specific initiatives for CCEDA’s new EDO may include

– Worker housing solutions
– Business mentorship & skills training
– Advancing value-added wood products recommendations
– An update of the Cortes Local Economic Action Plan (LEAP)
– Climate change action & Regenerative Tourism initiatives
– Assisting with the Village Commons development in Manson’s Landing
– Strengthening partnerships with Island Non-profits, and the Klahoose First Nation

Please find out more about CCEDA at Kate Maddigan can be reached at for any inquiries about CCEDA’s upcoming community economic development initiatives.

Also on this topic:

From Cortes Currents: Kate Maddigan, CCEDA’s new Economic Development Officer

From Cortes Radio: Cortes Island has its first Economic Development Officer, housing a top priority

April 24, 2023

Cortes Island Outdoor Pavilion Will Invigorate Village Commons

Locally built timber-frame structure to create space for community events and gatherings

COURTENAY,  24 April 2023 – The Cortes Island Community Foundation has embarked on a new project to build a Central Covered Pavilion as part of a larger effort to enhance accessibility, vibrancy, and walkability in the Village of Manson’s Landing, with funding support through Island Coastal Economic Trust’s Community Placemaking program.

The new four-season, common outdoor gathering place is one outcome of a larger Village Commons Site Concept Plan, completed by the Cortes Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA) in 2021. The Plan involved extensive feedback, visioning, and consultation with local stakeholders who expressed a clear desire for a vibrant permanent outdoor gathering space where people can gather and partake in events and programs year-round.

“We are so excited to see this beautiful new project come to life, as it will allow us to host events, share food, be physically active, and connect with others,” says Manda Aufochs-Gillespie, Executive Director of Cortes Island Community Foundation. “We are confident the structure will be appreciated by residents and visitors and that it will have a huge impact on community well-being and help with post-pandemic business renewal.”

The new timber-frame structure, built using local wood products and employing local craftspeople, would be the first (and only) public outdoor structure supporting outdoor gatherings anywhere on Cortes Island. Located on 2.6 acres of commercially zoned vacant land, in the heart of Cortes Island’s largest community and commercial centre (Manson’s Landing), the Central Covered Pavilion will also support patrons of the nearby Vending Boardwalk and the year-round neighbouring Manson’s Hall Farmer’s Market.

“We chose this location because it’s in the heart of our community’s village centre and accessible by foot to our Seniors Village, the Cortes Island School, the Manson’s grocery stores, the Friday Market, and the future Rainbow Ridge housing project,” says Manda. “As we saw during the pandemic we need more outdoor covered spaces that can be used any time of the year. We are an island alive with community groups and culture… but often lacking the spaces to make coming together easy. We believe this Pavilion and Welcome Pole will be just the beginning of creating the infrastructure for year-round vibrancy.”

Concept design of the project. Photo courtesy of CCEDA

The Village Commons aims to add to the sense of community and connection by providing much-needed additional commercial space for local entrepreneurs. The new Pavilion will provide value-added to local vendors with the expansion and revitalization of the Manson’s Landing core with this covered space. Other Site Plan features include the Vendor Market Place and Welcome Pole Courtyard, which alongside the Pavilion form “Phase 1” of the current development efforts. A Village Commons Working Group, that includes representatives of CCEDA, local First Nations, the neighbouring South Cortes Community Association and the Cortes Housing Society and others will guide this project.

“We are honoured to support this collaborative project that will encourage and foster a stronger sense of community among residents of Cortes Island and further entice visitors into the area,” says Island Coastal Economic Trust CEO Brodie Guy. “This project is a great example of using local resources and craftsmanship to build a structure that will further showcase the wide variety of events and talent in the community, while building upon the Island’s already inspiring and creative reputation.”

“This type of community and resident-focused enhancement provides an increased sense of community and pride of place. Coming out of the pandemic, there is a renewed sense of people wanting to gather and find a central space in which to do so. I am thrilled to see this project moving forward and know it will benefit both residents and visitors alike,” says Brian Cant, Acting President & CEO, 4VI.

“This new pavilion will give both the residents and visitors of Manson’s Landing a new space to enjoy while they explore all the great businesses and local amenities that the Village has to offer,” said Michele Babchuk, MLA for the North Island. “By using local wood and employing local builders, the project will highlight the resources and skills that Cortes Island residents can be proud of, and I am so pleased that community partners were able to join ICET and bring this project to life.”

The Cortes Island Community Foundation will receive $50,000 and is supported through a collaborative funding arrangement between the Island Coastal Economic Trust and the Targeted Regional Tourism Development Initiative (through 4VI). The Community Placemaking program provides one-stop funding support of up to 100% of project costs to stimulate and promote vitality in downtowns, Main Streets and business districts across the region.

The project is set to get underway shortly.


About Island Coastal Economic Trust

Founded by the Province of British Columbia in 2006, the Island Coastal Economic Trust works to build a sustainable and resilient coastal economy in reciprocal relationships with First Nations, municipalities, and regional districts across Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast, and islands and inlets from the Salish Sea to Cape Caution. Serving over half a million residents, we partner with communities in the development and financing of their economic infrastructure and diversification efforts through our unique structure that is led by, and accountable to, communities.

Since our inception, Island Coastal Economic Trust has approved more than $59 million to economic development initiatives that have attracted over $322 million in new investment to our region. These investments have created over 2,750 permanent jobs, and countless positive impacts, across the coast.

Island Coastal Economic Trust acknowledges that we work for communities across the ancestral and unceded territories of the Kwak̓wala, Nuučaan̓uɫ, Éy7á7juuthem, Ligwilda’xw, Pəntl’áč, She shashishalhem, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, Hul’q’umi’num’, diitiidʔaatx̣, SENĆOŦEN, Lekwungen, and T’Sou-ke speaking peoples.

Media Contacts

Brodie Guy
Island Coastal Economic Trust

Manda Aufochs-Gillespie
Executive Director
Cortes Island Community Foundation

See the ICET notice here: