Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Prince Rupert Port Authoirty invests in twin projects for Kitkatla

The ribbon cutting ceremony at the
Kitkatla greenhouse
(Photo courtesy PRPA)
A 244,000 dollar investment from the Prince Rupert Port Authority Community Investment Fund will be put to work preserving traditional food production and providing nutritional education with the Gitxaala Nation.

Representatives from the Port travelled to Kitkatla earlier this month to take part in a blessing ceremony and commissioning of two new community spaces, a garden and green house project which will grow local produce and a kitchen and eating space for food preparation and training.

“We are very thankful to the Port of Prince Rupert’s partnership and financial contributions, for the Green House and Community Kitchen. These new facilities will go a long way to fostering the greater independence and sustainability of our nation, providing meaningful educational opportunities while strengthening the social fabric of our community.” -- Clifford White, Chief Councillor of the GitxaaĊ‚a Nation

The garden program was created a number of years ago, but costs related to the need for topsoil and transportation requirements reduced its effectiveness, the construction of the 20 by 40  heated greenhouse will provide the community the opportunity to make better use of the facility and become increasingly self-sufficient, while promoting physical activity.

A renovated community kitchen
at Kitkatla funded in part through
the Prince Rupert Port Authority
Community Investment Fund

(Photo courtesy PRPA)
The kitchen project is located in a renovated building and features a two story deck that allows patrons to sit outdoors and enjoy the oceanfront view, the kitchen also allows residents of Gitxaala to explore partnerships and training opportunities with Northwest Community College and its culinary program.

The kitchen will also provide opportunity to provide food for the Lach Klan School and prenatal packages for residents of the community.

The majority of the funding for the Gitxaala Community Garden and Kitchen project came from the Port's contribution, with other funding partners including the BC Ministry of Agriculture, Coast Industrial Construction and the Hearth and Stroke Foundation of BC and Yukon.

Port President and CEO Don Krusel noted how the Gitxaala projects are examples of the kind of initiatives that the Community Investment Fund was created for.

“The community kitchen and garden are physical embodiments of the spirit of our Community Investment Fund, which was established to enable significant quality of life improvements to a broad demographic of community members. Experiencing these facilities, surrounded by members of the Gitxaala Nation, it was evident how useful these community assets already are, and will be for years to come.”

A media release from the Prince Rupert Port Authority (see here) provides more background on the initiative

The near quarter of a million dollar investment is just the latest of community investments that the Prince Rupert Port Authority has made around the North Coast.

You can review the list of contributions from that program so far in 2016 from our archive page here.

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