After the wildfires of 2003, which burned down the Tolko mill in Louis Creek, and effected the loss of a large number of jobs in the local communities, along with government legislation allowing forest licensees to remove timber from the area without the benefit of jobs to the area communities, volunteers came together to pursue a Community Forest License for the Lower North Thompson Valley.
As a result, the Lower North Thompson Commun
ity Forest Society (LNTCFS) was formed representing the communities of McLure, Louis Creek, Barriere, Little Fort and Chu Chua. Part of the LNTCFS’ mission statement is to “provide to the Lower North Thompson through sustainable forestry”. Profits provide revenue for much needed community enhancement within each of the participating areas by providing grants to not for profit organizations, scholarships and bursaries for graduating students.
Surplus revenue is now disbursed annually by the LNTCFS through a granting process to local non-profit organizations. Grant applications are discussed by the board of directors before a decision is made as to the recipients for that year.
The LNTCFS awarded its first grants in 20011, with a total of $5,750 handed out. In 2017, 27 grant applications were submitted, and a total of $80,000 was dispersed that year. Bringing the total of funds granted to community projects and groups within the LNTCFS area during a seven year period to $549,859.This number does not include the annual scholarship and bursary funds that are awarded on behalf of the LNTCFS to Barriere Secondary School graduates. The LNTCFS has supported the following large projects within the area; $150,000 to the Splash Pad in Barriere, and $55,000 towards construction of the Barriere Search and Rescue Building.
This year the LNTCFS will again be donating $80,000 through their community grants process, with an additional $35,000 awarded in scholarships/bursaries for Barriere Secondary 2019 graduates.
Applications and guidelines for the community grants program are available at: https://lntcfs.org/ grants/ or you can contact the LNTCFS at: 250-672-1941.
The LNTCFS grant deadline is Dec. 31, 2018, with decision making set to take place in January.
To learn more about the Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society go to: https://lntcfs.org