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Funding Indigenous-led non-profits a step toward reconciliation

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 11:08 PST, Mon February 6, 2023

Last Updated: 12:17 PST, Mon February 6, 2023

About $5 million in grants have been committed to 23 Indigenous-led non-profit organizations from the Indigenous Resilience and Recovery Grant Initiative.

“Indigenous-led non-profit organizations deliver critical programs and services to individuals and families,” said Megan Dykeman, Parliamentary Secretary for Community Development and Non-Profits. “This investment recognizes the essential role of Indigenous-led organizations in supporting communities.”

The funding is part of the $34-million Recovery and Resiliency Fund announced in March 2022 with $30 million from the province and $4 million from Vancouver Foundation. The initiative includes two funding streams and is being administered in partnership with the Vancouver Foundation, United Way BC, and New Relationship Trust.

The New Relationship Trust administered the grant application and award process for Indigenous-led non-profit organizations with annual operating budgets of more than $1 million. Through this funding stream, 22 organizations will each receive $72,000 per year over three years, for a total of $216,000, and one organization will receive $150,000 over two years.

The multi-year, flexible funding will support Indigenous organizations with pandemic-related recovery support and enhance organizational and economic resilience.

This partnership with New Relationship Trust aligns with governments commitment to advancing meaningful reconciliation. Indigenous-led non-profits have faced immense challenges through the pandemic and recovery, and the grants will help address critical gaps in their operations. This grant process for Indigenous-led organizations is being led by Indigenous decision-makers.

“We were honoured and beyond inspired to be part of the Non-Profit Recovery and Resiliency Initiative,” said Walter Schneider, chief executive officer of New Relationship Trust. “We were able to collaborate with some amazing Indigenous organizations and people doing great work that is often overlooked and unseen by the mainstream. We also hold our hands up to the B.C. Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, the Vancouver Foundation, and the United Way for their commitment, inclusion, and empowering an authentic Indigenous-to-Indigenous delivery approach.”

Brenda Knights, chief executive officer of Vancouver Native Housing Society, said: “We are appreciative of this provincial funding grant through New Relationship Trust. This funding will help our organization improve its efficiency with investments in technical infrastructure, and education and training. The work that we do empowers Indigenous people through housing, artists-in-residence, and more, and it is important work that is helping change lives in the community.”

Indigenous-led organizations with budgets of less than $1 million were eligible to apply for the funding stream administered by Vancouver Foundation, in partnership with the United Way, which closed in October 2022. Decisions on those applications are expected soon.

Learn More:

B.C. Non-Profits Newsletter:

New Relationship Trust:

Vancouver Foundation:

United Way BC:

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