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Central Okanagan  

Grants boost public safety

Five Kelowna organizations that focus on public safety are sharing $172,800 in community gaming grants from the provincial government.

Every year, the provincial government approves $135 million in gaming grants that benefit more than 5,000 local organizations that serve communities throughout British Columbia.

Vice president of Central Okanagan Search and Rescue, Duane Tresnich knew exactly where his money was going. 

"Out of the $99,800 about $90,000 is going towards the KILO 2 replacement vehicle, the oldest vehicle in the fleet," he said. 

Kilo 2 is a Ford F350 from 1993 which has "come to the end of its operational life."

"$7,000 is going towards a replacement snowmobile and the remainder is going towards personal protective equipment such as jackets and gloves."

Tresnich said they expected to possibly get a quarter of the amount they actually received. 

"We were expecting probably $20,000 to $30,000. They're usually pretty good and that's about average when you apply," he said. "To get the full amount that you apply for, we're just ecstatic."

MLA Steve Thomson said outdoor recreation opportunities are limitless in the Okanagan.

“It’s reassuring to know these organizations are there to help when challenges occur.”

“In a region blessed with so much to do outdoors, it’s reassuring to know help is available if you need it,” says Premier Christy Clark, MLA for Westside-Kelowna. “These grants will go a long way towards helping those who help others.”

The Community Gaming Grant Program allows non-profit organizations to apply for provincial gaming revenues. This latest round is through the Public Safety intake, which supports public safety initiatives along with disaster relief and emergency preparedness, such as restorative justice projects and search and rescue programs.

Organizations receiving grants:

  • Central Okanagan Search & Rescue Society - $99,800 for its search and rescue operations.
  • Canadian Ski Patrol Ogopogo Zone - $25,000 for its First Aid Training Program.
  • Kelowna & District Safety Council Society - $20,000 for its Little Travellers' Safety Village.
  • Kelowna Snowmobile Club - $18,000 for trail safety management.
  • Canadian Ski Patrol System, Pacific Division - $10,000 for its Instructor Training Program.

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