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CBT Expands Eligibility for COVID-19 Supports

The Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) has expanded the criteria to qualify for support for small businesses and community organizations, following its announcement for $11.7 million in funding earlier in April.

CBT said the funding is aimed at mitigating the damage done by the broad impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic within the region.

“The situation caused by the pandemic continues to evolve, and the Trust is actively monitoring the challenges arising in the Basin and the aid provided by all levels of government,” said Johnny Strilaeff, President and CEO of CBT. “With input from our partners and communities, we’ve decided to assist a wider range of services consistent with our strategic priorities as established by Basin residents.”

More: CBT Providing COVID-19 Support to Businesses and Community Groups (April 3, 2020)

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The Trust said it is helping food recovery groups ramp up their programs and adapt to reducing food waste and keeping families fed with nutritious food amid the pandemic.

It has since expanded to assist farmers’ markets supply healthy, locally grown food by providing assistance to the BC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Coupon Program, which offers coupons to seniors, pregnant women, and low-income families. CBT added that it is also looking at ways it can assist local food suppliers to meet growing demand.

Support is also being provided for organizations that address the healthy development of young children and the needs of their families, which includes developing activities for children and workshops for parents.

Students facing financial hardships from the pandemic will also receive targeted assistance form the Trust.

According to CBT, the pandemic has highlighted the importance of supplying high-speed internet access. It will add to supports from the provincial government to help internet service providers enhance access to high-speed internet to Basin communities.

Resources available from CBT can be found and applied for here.

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