September is Community Foundations Month, which aims to educate on the ways in which community foundations support local non-profits and charities.
A community foundation helps to fund local charities, community projects and programs, as well as scholarships and bursaries. The BC Interior Community Foundation in Kamloops is a member of Community Foundations of Canada, consisting of 191 foundations nationwide, and one of 52 in the province. Clearwater and Barriere also both have community foundations, established to support projects in those areas.
Many may not know what the BC Interior Community Foundation is, though have likely felt or noticed its impact.
Monies donated to the BCICF is invested in permanent, endowed funds. This means, the principal is protected forever and the annual earings are distributed into the community as scholarships, bursaries and grants to local charitable organizations.
“In 2021 we disbursed a record-breaking $490,000, the majority of which went to local charities,” said BCICF executive director Wenda Noonan in a press release. “With needs ranging from food insecurity to seniors isolation, from accessible summer camp opportunities for children with special needs and youth at risk to wellness progams for low-income mothers.”
The BCICF has supported communities in the region since 1984 and this year, $600,000 is available to disburse throughout the Thompson, Nicola and South Cariboo regions.
Funds have been given to groups focused in health, environment, youth, education, seniors, families, arts and culture and so much more.
“One way groups can access our funding is through our Small Projects Granting program,” said Noonan. “Many of our region’s charities are struggling and just trying to survive”
The BCICF grant funding is easy to apply for through an online application. The deadline for the next round of disbursements is Oct. 1.
“This is basically what our community foundation is all about, raising funds and then giving them back to our communities,” said Noonan.
In 2020, the Province of British Columbia officially declared September as Community Foundations Month. For more information about the BCICF visit www.bcicf.ca.
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