Resilience and safety grant recipients

Vancouver Island communities are set to benefit from nearly $1 million in resilience and safety grants, aimed at empowering youth, supporting healthy workforces and promoting better health and well-being across the region.

The three key areas of focus for these grants are:

  • Promoting youth resilience
  • Businesses leading the way to a strong and healthy workforce 
  • New ways to reach people who use illicit drugs alone

“The toxic drug crisis continues to devastate communities across Canada and B.C. is no exception. We’re addressing the crisis across all fronts with all partners including grassroots, community organizations,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “These grants empower people on the frontlines of this crisis to create innovative strategies to support those affected by the toxic drug crisis in their communities. This way, we are building stronger communities where everyone can thrive.” 

The resilience and safety grant program was developed to provide Island Health the opportunity to partner with Indigenous and non-Indigenous community organizations to launch new and innovative initiatives aimed at improving youth resilience, workplace wellness, and individual safety related to the toxic drug crisis.  Island Health issued a call for expressions of interest on October 16th, which was followed by a detailed application process for short-listed applicants in December.

“We are pleased to support this second round of the resilience and safety grants.  These grants recognize the power of local knowledge and expertise to address complex societal needs and have long term health benefits,” said Dr. Reka Gustafson, Island Health Vice President, Population and Public Health and Chief Medical Health Officer. 

Eight grants have been awarded to, or are partnered with, Indigenous communities and organizations, with all three First Nation cultural families - the Coast Salish, Nuu-chah-nulth and Kwakwaka’wakw - represented. Fourteen more grants have been awarded to other organizations in communities across the Island Health region.

“The resilience and safety grants have been a great opportunity not only to resource and support much needed work in our communities but also to see the passion, creativity and innovation that exists in addressing the impacts of the toxic drug crisis across our region,” said Julie Lajeunesse, Island Health Executive Director, Addiction Medicine and Substance Use. “This granting process reveals the hard work and dedication of our communities in our shared work.” 

For a list of grant recipients please visit Resilience and Safety Grants.