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Wildfire Transition Project



Community Futures support available for
rural businesses impacted by the 2017 wildfires

April 9, 2018 --- Rural small businesses that have been impacted by the 2017 wildfires in British Columbia can access help in the recovery process from their local Community Futures office. Five Community Futures offices in the areas affected by the wildfires – Community Futures Cariboo Chilcotin, Central Interior First Nations, North Cariboo, Sun Country, and Thompson Country – are providing targeted support to help small businesses rebuild as part of the Wildfire Business Transition Project.

Assistance provided includes:

  • Outreach and advisory services
  • Business coaching, training and/or peer mentoring
  • Employee training and recruitment
  • Business continuity planning and risk assessment
  • Marketing opportunities
  • Access to financing

The 2017 wildfire season was the worst in BC’s history and had devastating economic impacts that continue to be felt today. An estimated 15,000 businesses were affected by the wildfires. In addition to the immediate impacts of property damage and loss of business due to evacuation orders, businesses are now grappling with the longer-term effects of the fires on business continuity. Businesses across all sectors have had to deal with the loss of employees, customers and cash flow, among other things, and many are still struggling to recover.

Community Futures can help. If you and your business were impacted, call the nearest Community Futures office in the following regions:

Community Futures Cariboo Chilcotin
Williams Lake
Tel. (250) 392-3626 or toll free 1-888-879-5399

Community Futures Central Interior First Nations
Tel. (250) 828-9833

Community Futures North Cariboo
Tel. (250) 992-2322 or toll free 1-877-992-2322

Community Futures Sun Country
Tel. (250) 453-9165 or toll free 1-800-567-9911

Community Futures Thompson Country
Tel. (250) 828-8772 or toll free 1-877-335-2950

Funding for the Wildfire Business Transition Project has been provided by Western Economic Diversification Canada and the Community Futures Development Association of BC. This augments previous funding provided by Northern Development Initiative Trust and the Cariboo Chilcotin Beetle Action Coalition for the northern communities.



Supported by/Avec l'appui de :


Stó:lō Community Futures bringing the RBC First Peoples Enterprise Accelerator Program to S’ólh Téméxw

Stó:lō Community Futures (SCF) has formalized a partnership between SCF and Simon Fraser University (SFU)’s Beedie School of Business, to bring the RBC First Peoples Enterprise Accelerator Program (FPEAP) to S’ólh Téméxw.  Press Release

Greater Trail - Executive Director Appointed

Community Futures Greater Trail's Board of Directors and Staff are pleased to announce that Erik Kalacis has accepted the position of Executive Director.  Erik's first day with Community Futures Greater Trail will be Monday, September 11, 2017.  Click Here to read the full announcement.

Local Crowdfunding Platform to Assist Fire Ravaged Communities

Local Crowdfunding Platform to Assist Fire Ravaged Communities

Vanderhoof, BC. – As devastating wildfires continue to tear across the province of British Columbia many small and medium sized businesses, as well as nonprofit organizations are seeking solutions to make rebuilding easier. Local crowdfunding platform, InvestLocalBC feels it can assist in some small way.
“Sourcing funds to assist with the recovery from the wildfires is an excellent example of what the InvestLocalBC platform was created to accomplish.” said Graham Stanley, the Manager of Community Futures Stuart Nechako which created the platform. “Local solutions to local problems.”
With so many rural communities being impacted by the wildfires, this local perspective has taken on a whole new significance. “Right now we are just seeing the emergency portion of this disaster,” said Stanley, “the rebuilding of our communities will be going on for years to come. With this in mind and with our mandate to assist local communities InvestLocalBC waiving the service fees for any campaign involved in the rebuilding from these horrific fires.” InvestLocalBC operates under a “fixed funding” model. Fixed funding assumes administrative fees of a 5% commission. This commission will be waived for all vetted projects and campaigns, removing at least one financial barrier to reconstruction.
To further the cause InvestLocalBC has partnered with Fundrazr a crowdfunding pioneer in BC to “increase our reach on the nonprofit side and FundRazr has an extremely large audience,” stated Stanley.
Anyone looking at a wildfire recovery or community redevelopment campaign can visit the website at or contact local manager Tom Bulmer with any questions or concerns. Call 1-800-266-0611 or email
About Community Futures Stuart Nechako:
Media Contact:
Graham Stanley
Media Contact:
Tom Bulmer
Community Futures Greater Trail

July 26, 2017

Community Futures Greater Trail would like to take this time to announce the resignation of our General Manager, Don Freschi. 
Don joined the Community Futures Greater Trail team as General Manager in February 2013 and has spearheaded several exciting and innovative projects in the Greater Trail area. Some of these successes include the start up of the MIDAS Fab Lab located in Trail, partnering with Columbia Basin Trust to deliver the Impact Investment Fund (IIF), and introducing the Junior Dragons’ Den competition for local youth entrepreneurs.
The MIDAS (Metallurgical Industrial Development Acceleration Studies) facility, located at 2970 Highway Drive in Trail, is a hub for hands-on skills training in digital fabrication using state-of-the-art rapid prototyping tools such as 3D scanners, 3D printers, and CNC machines. Since its grand opening in 2016, hundreds of individuals have been trained to use these advanced tools and it has become a draw for people of diverse interests and abilities from all across the region. Under the mentorship of Don Freschi as GM, Community Futures Greater Trail donated time, money, and expertise to the project; it is largely his passion and unwavering support for MIDAS that led to the creation of this technology hub in Trail.
The Impact Investment Fund is a Columbia Basin Trust funded program administered through Community Futures offices in the Basin. The funding program is intended for businesses and organizations considered high risk by conventional lenders or may not be able to provide adequate returns to be attractive to investors; however, success will have a demonstrable positive effect on the local economy, such as keeping jobs in the community, re-purposing a vacant building, supporting local arts and culture, etc.
The Junior Dragons’ Den competition is an annual event open to youth entrepreneurs. The competition was started through the CF Greater Trail office, in partnership with CF Central Kootenay and CF Boundary, and has expanded to include the East Kootenays and Revelstoke. Youth pitch business ideas against other competitors within their age class and winners are determined through a combination of panel judges and live audience voting. Since its inception in 2013, the competition has steadily grown in popularity within local schools, the public, and sponsors alike. Year after year, people are blown away by the calibre of business ideas brought forward and several winners have taken their ideas into operation after taking away the prize money. The competition has become a fun and effective tool for getting youth involved in business, innovation, and
The Board and staff of Community Futures Greater Trail wish Don all the best in his future endeavors. Please join us to thank Don at an open house in his honour at Community Futures Greater Trail, 825 Spokane Street, Trail, BC on Thursday, August 17th from 11:30am to 2:30pm.
The Board of Directors
Community Futures Greater Trail
Community Futures British Columbia Executive Director Retires

On behalf of Community Futures BC Board, please find attached announcement regarding Marie Gallant, CFBC Executive Director’s retirement.

Marie has been with the CF program for over 19 years in the roles of volunteer Board member, Business Analyst, General Manager and most recently as CFBC’s Executive Director. 

Through her time with CF, Marie has significantly improved the asset base and financial stability of the organization through the successful negotiation and delivery of a variety of initiatives and leaves the organization financially positioned to address future needs of the program in BC.

Although Marie Gallant will be retiring from her current full-time position with CFBC she will continue to be available to the Community Futures program and other non-profit organizations delivering Board and staff training and support services through the Community Futures Leadership Institute and her own private consulting organization. Marie’s last official day with CFBC will be January 31, 2017 but she will be using up vacation time between now and the end of January and as such will not be in the office.

I’d like to express great appreciation for the hard work that Marie Gallant has done for our network over the past decades and for the deep passion she has always held for the Community Futures movement.

Please join me in wishing Marie the very best in her next chapter.  

Yours sincerely,

Robert Annis

Chair, CFBC


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About Community Futures

For over 30 years, we’ve been fostering entrepreneurship in rural BC. We offer small business loans, business counseling and specialized programs to help you start or grow a business, and to help communities become more resilient and dynamic. Find out more…

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#C230 - 7871 Stave Lake St.
Mission, BC  V2V 0C5

T: 604-289-4222
T: 1-888-303-2232