Coast Sustainability Trust awards grants

  • Sep. 17, 2007 1:00 p.m.

Submitted by Eric van Soeren-Six initiatives on the islands are receiving a total of $273,732 in funding from the Coast Sustainability Trust, the trust announced last week.The Haida Gwaii Mapping Project will receive $100,000 to help upgrade and expand its equipment and software to deal with current workloads, and to be able to perform more mapping to support the land use planning process. It also hopes to offer a wider array of public interest geographic information systems and cartography services to the Council of the Haida Nation, other government agencies, communities, organizations and educational institutions on the islands.The Delkatla Sanctuary Society will receive $3,000 towards a furnace upgrade that will allow its facility to be open longer for tourists and islanders alike.The Old Massett Village Council was approved for grants to three different projects, for a total of $118,732. The first project will allow Old Massett to host a three-week carving tool making course in the village. A previous course was very successful, and led to several people earning at least part of their living as carvers. The second project involves developing an economic development strategy for the village of Old Massett. The third project will provide support for a pre-commercial shellfish aquaculture pilot project, and for three individuals to receive training in shellfish aquaculture.Skidegate was also successful in its request to help support two individuals who will work and receive training in shellfish aquaculture. Skidegate, through its wholly-owned Gwaalagaa Naay Corporation, will receive $52,000 to help support its pre-commercial shellfish pilot project.”These are the most recent of what we hope will be many worthwhile projects that the CST will be able to support. To date, over $1.35 million has been committed to projects on the islands,” said trustee Eric van Soeren.Funding for the six projects was approved at the August 2007 meeting of the Queen Charlotte Islands – Haida Gwaii regional steering committee of the Coast Sustainability Trust.”Regional steering committee members Duane Gould, Carol Kulesha, Amanda Reid-Stevens and Ken Rea work hard to sift through worthwhile projects,” said Mr. van Soeren. “Their task is to decide which of the initiatives seem most likely to provide long-term sustainable economic development in the communities of the islands.”Communities, First Nations and community-based non-profit organizations are invited to submit funding proposals. Application guidelines and general information is available at Interested parties can follow the links to the Community Matching Fund Guidelines and Stage One Application.