Government of Canada invests $2.1 million to support the relief and recovery of Francophone businesses and communities across Western Canada
EDMONTON, AB, July 17, 2020 /CNW/ – The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on businesses and communities across the country. From the outset, the Government of Canada has taken action to support sectors affected by the pandemic, including introducing a number of relief support measures through Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.
Igniting economic recovery for Francophone businesses in the West
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, official languages minority communities (OLMCs) have experienced revenue reductions and financial hardship. With Western Canada’s economy reopening, Francophone businesses and communities need assistance to help mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.
Today, the Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada, announced a total of $2.1 million to support the relief and recovery of Francophone businesses across Western Canada.
This includes an investment of $1.8 million through the Economic Development Initiative for the Francophone Economic Development Organizations (FEDOs) across Western Canada to establish and administer the Pan-West Francophone Economic Development Fund to support small- and medium-sized businesses, organizations, and communities.
In addition to the establishment of this Fund, each of the FEDOs in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba will also receive an additional $75,000 through the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) to further enhance supports and services to Francophone businesses impacted by the pandemic.
Together, these investments are expected to serve over 2000 Francophone clients and generate 18 community-based projects across Western Canada.
“We are helping businesses and communities affected by the pandemic to meet the challenges they are facing in this new reality. Today’s funding announcement is an additional boost for the Francophone community in the West to help it thrive and succeed in a post-COVID economy. We are working hard to help them come back stronger than ever.”
– The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada
“Through these investments, we are making sure Francophone businesses have access to the supports and services needed to re-open and prosper in the recovery stage of this pandemic. WD’s valued partnership with the Francophone Economic Development Organizations is working to create meaningful support for Official Languages Minority Communities and ensure inclusive participation in Western Canada’s economy.”
– The Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs
- In April 2001, Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) welcomed the four Francophone Economic Development Organizations (FEDOs) to the Western Canada Business Service Network.
- The FEDOs have a long history in enhancing the vitality of minority language communities and providing economic development across Western Canada.
- FEDOs provide Francophone businesses with a wide range of support including training, business and community economic development, information services, marketing advice, networking and mentoring.
- Since 2019, WD has invested over $6.6 million in Francophone entrepreneurs and organizations in Western Canada.
- Western Economic Diversification Canada
- Regional Relief and Recovery Fund
- Canada‘s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan
- Société de développement économique de la Colombie-Britannique
- Conseil de développement économique de l’Alberta
- Conseil économique et coopératif de la Saskatchewan
- Conseil de développement économique des municipalités bilingues du Manitoba
Follow the department on Twitter: @WD_Canada
SOURCE Western Economic Diversification Canada