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Community vote selects six initiatives to receive City of Victoria funding

2021 participatory budgeting process attracts more than 1,300 votes, $54,000 to be allocated
The allocation of $54,000 in community project funding, including $20,000 to SKAM Theatre Company (members shown above) was determined through the City of Victoria’s 2021 participatory budgeting process. (Courtesy of SKAM Theatre Company)

A community vote has determined that $54,000 in city funds will go to six community-led initiatives, ranging from a community hub building to art representation.

The allocation of funds from the City of Victoria’s 2021 participatory budget was decided through the participation of more than 1,300 resident voters.

“This is what empowering the community looks like in action,” Mayor Lisa Helps said in a release. “I’m so proud of the volunteer steering committee – how they engaged our community first to come up with projects to improve neighbourhood spaces in Victoria, and then how they organized voting, giving residents ultimate decision as to which projects were funded.”

The largest portion, $20,000, will support SKAM Theatre Company in creating short digital documentaries, shadow plays and animated shorts. Another $6,500 will allow for a new mural in Waddington Alley, created by clients of the nearby Lighthouse youth homelessness support society, while $5,000 will help pay for a Victoria Arts Council billboard to be adorned with works by local artists who are Black, Indigenous and people of colour.

A community hub in the 300-block of Harbour Road – complete with a little free library, a community notice board and a heritage marker – will be implemented with the allocation of $2,500.

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“The participatory budgeting process this year brought together different and valuable voices from the community to inspire beauty, positive change and a real sense of pride in where and how we live together,” steering committee member said Russ Elliott said.

“This process has been such a success, because it seeks to empower everyday people to be change agents in not only their own lives, but for their communities.”

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About the Author: Greater Victoria News Staff

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