Local groups are in the running to make their dreams come true, but they need your help.
The Aviva Community Fund is giving away $1 million to the ideas with the most votes in a Canada-wide competition.
The funds will be split between the entries with the top votes, for each category, in an online voting competition at www.avivacommunityfund.org.
The contest, which started in September, is now in round three of voting, which ends Nov. 30. Entries with the most votes from round three will move onto the semi-finals.
One local group has already made it to the semi-finals, after making the top 10 in round two.
Camp Hurlburt is thrilled with the amount of community votes gained, as it seeks up to $150,000 to initiate phase one of a rebuild of the 80-year-old camp.
“We’re very thankful to everybody who has gotten us there because it makes a big difference,” said Jennifer Yeo, with the Camp Hurlburt Association.
She added that the camp has had 1,325 individual people voting for it over the two rounds.
“We just hope that everyone sticks to it and keeps voting, and vote every day.”
Voting in the semi-finals begins Dec. 5 and ends Dec. 16.
Voting for round three is currently underway with the following local organizations in the running:
- Community Dental Access Centre Renovation Project – the centre is seeking up to $150,000 so that it can complete the renovations to open a low-income dental clinic in Vernon.
- Human Rights Mural – the project needs up to $150,000 create murals in Vernon, Surrey and one to be decided.
- Let’s Get Moving, Moving, Moving – Okanagan Power Soccer is seeking up to $50,000 for power chairs and equipment to keep disabled individuals from Vernon, Kelowna and Penticton in the sport.
- Outdoor Community Ice Rink – Okanagan Dreammakers Society wants to keep their kids safe and active and needs up to $50,000 to renovate the outdoor rink at Head of the Lake.
- Sookinchoot Youth Centre – Pine Needle Productions needs up to $150,000 to purchase digital film equipment to grow its program for First Nations and Metis youth in the North Okanagan.
- That All May Come – MacKenzie Camp on Mabel Lake is looking for up to $50,000 to complete renovations at the camp
These entries are competing against hundreds of other projects across Canada in three different categories (small, medium and large) based on the funding being sought. The ideas with the most votes will go on to the semi-finals, which start Dec. 5.
From the top 30 ideas in each category, the top 10 will move to the finals, where the judges will decide which ideas will be awarded grant money.
Camp Hurlburt can attest that this is a tough competition, and it has gone to such extremes as printing up cards to remind people to vote, sending cookies to companies, tweeting and even holding strategy meetings.
“You have to have a strategy meeting, this is a big deal,” said Yeo as the camp vies against approximately 500 other ideas per round.
Once the general competition closes, the special broker competition provides a second chance for non-winning ideas of all sizes to win funding, if they are broker supported.