Because of Covid-19, the 2020 Columbia Basin Trust CIP/AAP program is being assessed in a different way – through a public online engagement tool. What this means is that we really need our community’s help to access this project funding this year. Please take five minutes to voice your support for our request this year *click here*. We need a show of support from Nelson residents primarily, but also from residents of areas E and F (Blewett, Taghum, North Shore, Balfour, and Proctor/Harrop). Castlegar, Creston, Kaslo, Nakusp, New Denver, Salmo, and Slocan. The submissions between now and May 11th will strongly influence whether or not we get this funding.
Our project this year will be instrumental in getting us to the next step in our economic development work to build a thriving film and screen-based industry in the Kootenays. Here is a little bit about our request (and thank you in advance for voicing your support for our project!):
About our 2020 request
Nelson Civic Theatre Society requests support to achieve the Economic and Industry Development outcomes of the Kootenay Screen-Based Industry (KSBI) initiative. This involves strategic research and planning to support the next evolution in becoming a desirable, viable location for film and media production. Funding will support hiring a KSBI Research & Development Coordinator to assist the Program Manager in preparing a robust strategy for local screen sector development.
We are achieving steady progress on the program milestones including production of a signature local film festival and building KootenayFilm.com as a regional economic development hub. We now need to build our team – our project is substantial in size, and we need to add this role to have the capacity to undertake the research and development components required to see success in our project.
The screen-based industry has been a strong economic driver for the province of British Columbia and the potential for this to apply to our region is within reach. Our priorities lie in ensuring the Kootenay region is included in this growing industry. The next phase of the KSBI project will be achieved through:
- Comprehensive local research to identify development avenues and gain deeper insight into the region’s screen-based industry trends, economic impacts and emerging opportunities
- Strengthening the KSBI (East and West) network through strategic partnerships
Research helps us build a case for sector development
The BC motion picture industry is thriving with a total production volume of $3.5 billion (40% of the national share) (Profile 2018), yet minimal information addresses the industry within the Kootenays. The 2014 Creative BC Census Report only includes Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna, Kamloops, Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Nanaimo, and Prince George.
When the Kootenay-Columbia Film Commission received $40,000 from provincial funding to invest in film production in 2003, $3,850,000 was infused into the local economy (News Release, 2003). With this investment dating back to 17 years ago, there is a need for renewed support for this promising economy.
The economic opportunity in film is not being extended equally to the Kootenays. The R&D Coordinator makes it possible for us to gather the information we need to make an accurate and nuanced economic case for sector development, and to continue that research as the sector grows and changes.
Not just in Nelson: how this is a regional initiative
This project will be undertaken by The Civic Theatre in Nelson, but will impact the entire Kootenay Columbia film region. It is worth noting that this is consistent with our work to date, which has actively been inclusive and increasingly present in other regional communities in the East, Central and West Kootenays through activities such as our CBCB Festival, our regional KSBI Facebook group, and a recent inaugural East Kootenay SBI meetup (nice work Cranbrook!).
Helping local economies
To put the Kootenays on the map as an area with a flourishing film industry, we need to undertake strategic research in order to measure trends of the local economy while identifying avenues for growth.
Local SBI workers will benefit directly as our research will lead to more opportunities for them and more access to funds because of the cases our research will make. Furthermore, we are interested in opportunities to repatriate SBI workers who have moved away or are making efforts to return to the area to seek work. We are looking to build opportunities for them to be able to make a living here without the need to head to bigger metro centres in search of work.
Our research will lead to local businesses benefiting from economic spin-offs as a result of more film production in the region. They will also be involved through strategic partnerships, so the entire community will be brought along with us. This is key because the film/SBI economy is not made up of only film and other media professionals, but also includes local businesses providing goods and services.
Successful outcomes include:
- Increased attention from BC film epicentres such as Kelowna, Vancouver, and Vancouver Island
- Gain opportunities to collaborate with neighbouring regions on sector development initiatives and large production projects
- Elevate region’s ability to compete as a film location attractive for investment
- Local sector grows from a small seed to a vibrant economic driver
Click here and select ‘Nelson Civic Theatre Society – Kootenay Screen-Based Industry Economic Research and Development’ to voice your support for Nelson Civic Theatre Society.
We only have this week to make our community case for support, so make sure you get your say. Thanks again for your help! Please share this information with friends and colleagues who live in the area and would also voice their support for our proposal.