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Support secured for people who are vulnerable and have low incomes

Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
By Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
May 13th, 2022

One of the city’s poverty-reduction programs is receiving a cash infusion to continue its work supporting people who are vulnerable and have low incomes.

Together Nelson — part of Nelson at its Best — will be the recipient of $50,000 for its Year One program to improve financial literacy skills and job readiness.

As well, the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) will also be receiving funding ($25,000) to develop an affordable housing action plan.

Nelson at its Best is a network of organizations and individuals that exists to help make Nelson a healthy community by providing and promoting a view of community planning and development through the lens of well-being and quality of life for all citizens.

Last year Nelson at its Best in conjunction with the City of Nelson, obtained funding to develop a poverty reduction plan for the Nelson area, titled Together Nelson. Through the research it found two priority groups — single parent families and the working poor — to be the two largest groups currently experiencing poverty in Nelson.

The other project receiving support was a partnership between Cranbrook and the Regional District of East Kootenay and other local governments within the regional district on a collaborative approach to reduce poverty in the region. The project is receiving $73,800.

The projects were from the third intake of the Union of B.C. Municipalities’ (UBCM) Poverty Reduction Planning and Action Program, which supports local government projects or plans to reduce poverty at the local level.

The intent of the funding is for local governments to develop programs to reduce poverty.

“These grants will support action at the local level. Municipalities will work with community partners to develop strategies that can break the cycle of poverty, strengthening communities and improving the lives of all British Columbians,” said Nicholas Simons, minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, in a press release.

Both Nelson projects involve community partners, Simons said, such as community-based poverty-reduction organizations, people with lived experience of poverty, businesses and First Nations or Indigenous organizations.

Around the province, 18 projects spanning 24 local governments will receive a total of more than $1 million from this intake. To qualify, projects, plans and strategies must focus on one or more of TogetherBC’s priority action areas, which include families, children and youth, education, housing, employment, income supports and social supports.

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