District of Houston, along with two other northern communities will be receiving funding through the province to develop poverty reduction plans.
District of Houston, Smithers and Kitimat each will be getting approximately $25,000 to understand how their specific industries, resources and rural location impacts people’s experience of poverty in their communities.
“The District of Houston will use these funds to support the planning done in our Community Health and Wellness Charter and our recent Housing Needs Assesment. This process will focus on the availability of social services, gaps in existing service structures and opportunities to improve social development and poverty reduction services in Houston,” said Mayor Shane Brienen of Houston.
Throughout the province, 10 projects across 12 local governments will receive a total of almost $350,000 from this intake. All projects will involve key community partners, such as community-based poverty reduction organizations, people with lived experience of poverty, businesses, local First Nations or Indigenous organizations.
“The needs of people in northern communities are unique,” said Nathan Cullen, MLA for Stikine. “We don’t always have the same services as other communities, which can impact how people experience poverty. That’s why these grants, which allow communities to make poverty reduction plans at the local level, are so important. Everyone in our region deserves the opportunity to succeed, and this funding will help them do that.”
These projects are from the second intake of the Poverty Reduction Planning and Action Program, administered by the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM).
“Local governments have called for a deeper provincial commitment to poverty reduction for many years now,” said Brian Frenkel, president, UBCM. “Our members also recognize that poverty is contextual and that our collective response needs to reflect the unique conditions and challenges in B.C.’s communities. We appreciate the support this program is providing for the development of local strategies and approaches.”