Victoria, BC – Over 100 community projects addressing numerous issues in Greater Victoria are being made possible with the distribution of over $2.8 million in Community Grants by the Victoria Foundation.
From housing to health & wellness, the environment to arts & culture, the approved $2,815,287 in annual Community Grants will allow 109 local non-profit organizations to create real change in our community.
The region’s largest non-government funder, the Victoria Foundation has awarded over $18 million so far this year and over $240 million since the Foundation began in 1936.
“The Community Grants are a direct way we’re able to contribute to tackling the issues identified by residents in the Victoria’s Vital Signs report as in need of improvement,” said Victoria Foundation CEO Sandra Richardson. “It’s a wonderful feeling to see so many inspiring civil society organizations get the resources they need to make a real impact in our community.”
The Community Grants are possible largely due to the generosity of individual donors and fund holders, who are able to pick particular projects they’re interested in supporting through the Foundation’s annual Make it Happen! guide. This year they contributed nearly $767,000 of the total $2.8 million.
A big thrust of this year’s Community Grant program was to try and get information about it into the hands of those organizations that may not have been aware of the funding opportunity. Outreach efforts were successful, with 19 first-time applicants for a range of projects.
“The generous support provided by the Victoria Foundation will contribute significantly to Cetus’s understanding of the direct impacts of vessel traffic noise on at-risk marine mammals,” said Mark Dombowsky, Executive Director of Cetus Research and Conservation Society. “It will enable Cetus to provide crucial corroboration to support further meaningful protections, particularly for the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales.”
“Victoria Film Festival really does bring film to life through the support of the Victoria Foundation,” said Kathy Kay, Festival Director. “This grant supports the Victoria Film Festival’s 2020 Media Art Exhibit, where Victorians will see fun, free interactive pop ups around the downtown core. Art sparks imagination in the community and so making more of the programming accessible is always a goal. Without the support given by the Victoria Foundation this would not be possible.”
Victoria’s Vital Signs is an annual community report card produced by the Victoria Foundation and Presenting Sponsor Coast Capital Savings. All the grants have a connection to one or more of the 12 issue areas identified in the report that contribute to the vitality and wellbeing of our community: Arts & Culture, Getting Started, Standard of Living, Learning, Belonging & Engagement, Safety, Sports & Recreation, Economy, Transportation, Housing, Environment, and Health & Wellness. All grants must also be connected to at least one of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.
In 2020, the Victoria Foundation will be changing the timing of its Community Grants cycle to a February to May timeline, with applications opening February 3 and closing March 2.
A full list and description of all projects funded is available here.