Foundation announces further COVID-19 grants

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The Salt Spring Island Foundation’s COVID-19 Emergency Preparedness and Relief Fund has reached $140,000 and is well on the way to the target of $200,000, the organization announced Monday.

In addition to the foundation, major donors to the fund include Country Grocer and the Upper Ganges Liquor Store, the Philip and Muriel Berman Foundation, Island Savings and the Capital Regional District. Donations to the fund from the wider community have reached $55,000.

Foundation board chair Brian Lawson said he is grateful for the overwhelming support.

“Our community is showing generosity and solidarity in so many ways during this crisis, and
we thank all who have given our local charities a helping hand through the foundation’s
emergency fund,” Lawson said.

To date, the foundation has distributed $60,732 from the fund to Salt Spring charities. In addition to grants already announced, the following organizations have received funds:
* IWAV: $10,000 to support various operations and programming threatened by the closure of the Transitions store due to the COVID-19 emergency. Half of this amount was funded by a Capital Regional District Grant-In-Aid.
* Salt Spring Community Services: $3,000 for a Food Harvest Coordinator to support enhancing and coordinating overall island food production and linking it to consumers in need.
* Salt Spring Public Library: $3,100 to support free island-wide virtual training and education programs through Lynda.com. This will assist islanders to learn business, software, technology and creative skills to achieve personal and professional goals at their own pace. It is intended to empower the most vulnerable in our community, including youth and those who have lost jobs, live in social isolation or suffer personal frustrations from the COVID-19 emergency.
* Therapeutic Riding Association: $2,000 to support the costs of feeding the program’s four horses due to financial hardship caused by the closure of the riding centre because of the COVID-19 emergency.
* Country Grocer Food Cards: $13,000 in gift cards have been distributed via local charities to those in need in the community. This is made possible through the generosity of Country Grocer and the Upper Ganges Liquor Store.

Donations to the COVID-19 Emergency Fund may be made at ssifoundation.ca or by mail to: Salt Spring Island Foundation, Box 244, Ganges PO, Salt Spring Island, BC, V8K 2V9. Donors should indicate on the cheque that the donation is to be directed to the COVID-19 Emergency Fund.

The foundation is inviting immediate applications from charities acting on their own behalf or acting on behalf of a not-for-profit organization. For full information, visit the website or contact the foundation’s operations director, Shannon Cowan, at shannon@ssifoundation.ca.

While the Salt Spring Island Foundation is assisting with needs in the wider community, it also encourages community members to support the Lady Minto Hospital directly at ladymintofoundation.com/covid-19.

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