Provincial funding is available to local governments looking to address poverty in their communities.

They can now apply for the second round of the province’s Poverty Reduction Planning & Action Program grants.

As part of TogetherBC, British Columbia’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, the province provided $5 million to the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UBCM) for the grant program that was started last year.

The program includes two streams of funding:

  • up to $25,000 to develop or update poverty reduction assessments or plans; and
  • up to $50,000 to undertake local poverty reduction actions.

Municipalities and regional districts can partner and apply with other local governments for regional grants.

Regional applications are eligible for up to $150,000.

For regional applications, the funding maximum for both streams is $150,000.

In the previous intake, 63 local governments received a combined $1.6 million for 34 poverty reduction plans and projects.

Applications for the second intake will be accepted until midnight on March 5th, 2021.

“These grants help local governments develop their own poverty reduction plans and projects that directly support vulnerable and low-income people in their communities,” said Nicholas Simons, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction. 

“TogetherBC recognizes we all need to work together to reduce poverty.”

Government will look at funding new projects including:

  • Housing;
  • families, children and youth;
  • education and training;
  • Employment;
  • income; and
  • social supports.

Projects must involve key community partners, such as community-based poverty reduction organizations, people with lived experience of poverty, businesses, local First Nations or Indigenous organizations.

“Poverty remains a persistent reality in too many B.C. communities,” said Brian Frenkel, UBCM president and Vanderhoof councillor. 

“This program strengthens the alignment between local initiatives and the goals identified in TogetherBC, and provides valuable support to strengthen local planning and improve supports to lower income residents.”

Interested communities are encouraged to apply for funding to support local initiatives and plans.