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Municipal community grants support health, arts, environment, youth

Twenty-seven local organizations shared funding through the Municipal Community Grants Program this year.

“Year in and year out, many volunteers work tirelessly to make this place we call home a vibrant and exciting community,” Mayor Steve Ferguson says. “We are incredibly proud to support their efforts through the Municipal Community Grants Program. There’s no doubt that investments in these organizations will pay huge dividends throughout 2024.”

The Municipal Community Grants Program supports not-for-profit and community-based organizations to implement activities and initiatives in areas such as arts, culture, heritage, recreation, environment, health and human services. The program has two streams: grants under $5,000 and grants over $5,000, administered by The County Foundation on behalf of the municipality.

“This year, we’re proud to highlight the support allocated to vital sectors such as health and arts, representing 35 per cent and 22 per cent of the funding, respectively,” said Dominique Jones, the foundation’s executive director. “Additionally, grants were awarded towards organizations focused on the environment, heritage, recreation, youth and education. We look forward to seeing the impact of these projects and programs.”

Demand to receive municipal grants greatly exceeded supply again this year as the foundation worked through requests for $390,606.27 and was budgeted to grant 39 per cent, or $150,485.

A reduction to the $414,617 requested last year is attributed to the change in bylaw where qualifying organizations and projects now apply directly to the municipality for in-kind use of venues for projects for “community good” rather than through the grant program.

As well as the reduction of about $38,000 for in-kind funding removed, cash funding was reduced by $60,000 to reflect council’s earlier decision to fund the ROC (Recreational Outreach Centre) directly from the operating budget.

Municipal staff are working with The County Foundation to review the Municipal Community Grants Program and policy. Early in 2024, community organizations were invited to answer a survey about their experiences with the current program, the services they provide and the challenges they face. Continued consultation on proposed program changes will happen over the summer. Recommendations will be brought to Council for consideration in fall 2024, with implementation of any changes prior to launching the 2025 program.

There were $129,716 in grants over $5,000 and $16,615 for grants under $5,000. The foundation contributes 25 per cent of the under $5,000 funding, this year totalling $4,164.

The 2024 recipients:
Over $5,000

  • Alchemy Artists Residency – Field Notes: Community Art Workshops: $5,000
  • Alzheimer Society of Hastings Prince Edward — Supporting programming and educational opportunities: $5,568
  • Baxter Arts Centre — Seven arts-related programs that aim to benefit the local community by offering free, accessible programming: $7,347
  • Children’s Foundation — Playing for Keeps (Cover the registration fees of sports and other activities) and Camps of Hope (subsidizes the registration fees for camps for families in Prince Edward County): $7,500
  • Community Development Council of Quinte — Good Baby Program. Participants can purchase diapers, wipes and infant formula at a cost much lower than retail: $7,500
  • County Food Hub – -Cooking Club is a five-week culinary course that provides no-cost, universally accessible cooking classes: $10,642
  • County Stage Company – 2024 Artistic Season: Theatre, comedy and music performances, alongside complementary community outreach events: $5,000
  • Department of Illumination — Annual Firelight Lantern Festival: $3,000
  • Food to Share — Cover rental costs of the County Food Hub kitchen to prepare and distribute meals: $10,441
  • Friends of Sandbanks Park — Planting of a variety of native trees, shrubs and other plants in the area cleared of invasive Buckhorn: $5,189.52
  • Greater Than Youth Collective & Prince Edward Learning Centre — Activities for youth engagement including four Hackathons, co-launching a cooking series at the County Food Hub, and collaborating on a Youth Mental Health Summit: $16,848.48
  • Quintissimo – Free, after school, instrumental music program to reach 40 under-served youth ages 6-11 at PECI: $7,700
  • South Shore Joint Initiative – Wild Thing — Outdoor and educational opportunities for youth around environmental topics: $12,744
  • St. Andrew’s Anglican Wellington — Refurbishment and upgrade of the church hall to improve community programming: $10,000
  • The Hub @ 31 King (St. Andrew’s Presbyterian) — Hosting open sessions for seniors on a variety of topics related to aging: $9,236
  • Volunteer Information Quinte — Programs assisting with recruitment, referral, retention, and recognition for volunteers: $6,000

Under $5,000 

  • County Kids Read — To purchase non-fiction books to distribute to community youth and children: $4,659.50
  • Feral Folc — Free gatherings all about repairing things in and with the community. Promotes social connection and sustainability: $1,000
  • Gathering of Friends – Re-enactment of early Loyalist settlers at Ameliasburgh Museum: $150
  • Grow with Me Programs — Nature/survival/cooking camp during March Break for children in Grades 3 to 6: $3,000
  • Marilyn Adams Genealogical Centre — Storytime of personal and family histories within our community: $2,000
  • PEC Lion’s Club — Music in the Park: Two-hour family-friendly music in the park event featuring local bands. June 11 to September 3 (Tuesday nights and 1 Sunday): $4,659.50
  • Perfectly Preserved — Produce preserves and baked goods to be sold with all proceeds going directly to the hospital: $1,000
  • Picton United Church Food Bank — Expanding food delivery service: $2,000
  • Prince Edward 4-H Dairy Club — Youth program focused on dairy farming and compete on Achievement Day at Picton Fair: $600
  • The Hub Child and Family Centre — Educational sessions for parents and guardians surrounding the proper use and installation of car seats: $1,200
  • Wellington Community Gardens — Soil upgrade/top up in raised beds: $500

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