Communities Encouraged to Apply Now for Financial Assistance for Local Improvements: Struthers
Rural and northern communities are encouraged to revitalize and enhance their buildings, streets and community environment by tapping into the Hometown Manitoba program, Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives Minister Stan Struthers said today, noting that applications for the 2011 program are now available.
“A strong and attractive base of local economic activity is the heartbeat of vibrant communities,” said Struthers. “Through Hometown Manitoba, we support community-driven projects that enhance, upgrade or develop local attractions using local products and services and create long-term benefits for both citizens and visitors.”
Hometown Manitoba provides financial support for rural and northern community projects initiated by local governments, non-profit community organizations, co-operatives and businesses. The aim is to promote unique identities and themes that define a community through projects that enhance main street public places and building exteriors. These may include outdoor spaces associated with parks, community gathering places, seniors’ and youth centres, hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, schools, libraries, churches, museums, public administration buildings and other similar facilities.
Through the Hometown Manitoba program, the province partners with the community by providing funding under three categories:
- Hometown Main Streets Enhancements, under which the province will provide funding up to 50 per cent of total eligible project costs to a maximum $1,000;
- Hometown Meeting Places, under which the province will provide funding up to one-third of total eligible costs to a maximum of $5,000; and
- Tree planting component that supports community greening initiatives by offering up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs up to $5,000 to municipalities or town organizations to plant trees in public areas.
In 2010, 291 projects were approved representing program commitments of more than $450,000. Since program delivery commenced in 2004, Hometown Manitoba has supported over $2.1 million in community investment to complement approved provincial funding.
Some projects that have been completed through the Hometown Manitoba program include:
- constructing flower baskets and an archway for a local church in Pelican Rapids (2010);
- providing landscaping and green space for the community club in Brookdale (2008); and
- providing enhancements to Heritage House in McGregor (2004).
The Hometown Manitoba program guide is available at http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/ri/. Copies of the guide, application forms and further information are also available from any MAFRI GO Team Office or Centre, or by calling 1-800-567-7334.
The application deadline for the Hometown Manitoba program is March 15.