Interpretive Panels Moves Forward with Boost from Heritage Legacy Fund

Island Pathways is receiving a much-needed boost of $4100 to support its interpretive panels program, which will highlight the history of heritage locations and building along the Ganges Village Pathway Network. The funding comes through the Heritage Legacy Fund, the only provincial grant program that supports heritage conservation, awareness, planning and Indigenous partnership projects.

Island Pathways will be partnering with the SSI Historical Society, the Japanese Garden Society, the Museum at the Farmers’ Institute and others who know the history of SSI much better than we do, to create and install historical panels along the GVPN.

Many people walk/cycle the GVPN including tourists and other visitors. The pathways are accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week throughout the year. They are true community spaces and they are well used by the four schools in the area, dog walkers, visitors, seniors living in the many senior’s residences downtown and everyone else who wants to travel in and around our main village of Ganges. Island Pathways knows from our existing ‘history kiosk’ at Harbours End across from Harbour House, that everyone appreciates knowing a bit of the history of where they are standing and what they are looking at, as they travel in and around Ganges. Island Pathways plans to start by creating new panels in the year ahead that will highlight:

  • a First Nations historical portage route across the island that saved them hours paddling around the north end of SSI
  • the Japanese-Canadian farming history before the WWII land expropriation
  • the long history of the local farm community on the island
  • and the history of one of the oldest cemeteries on the island and the homesteaders and other fascinating people buried there.

“The Heritage Legacy Fund Committee was impressed by the diversity of heritage project applications this year,” says Angie Bain, Heritage BC Director and Researcher with the Union of BC Indian Chiefs. “Successful applicants have demonstrated the significant, innovative and meaningful ways that local communities, repositories and organizations are embracing reconciliation and working to protect, promote, and celebrate heritage on behalf of all British Columbians.”

Since June 2005, the Heritage Legacy Fund has supported heritage conservation in British Columbia with $1.8 million of project funding. The funds are made possible through a $5 million endowment established in 2003 by the Province of British Columbia.

Heritage BC’s Vice-Chair Lynda Lafleur says: “Every year many community heritage projects are received for consideration under the Heritage Legacy Fund. This year was no exception with a wide variety of excellent submissions from various regions of B.C. We appreciate the efforts of individuals, heritage organizations and local governments who choose to spend their time raising funds to preserve an important aspect of their local history.”

Jean Gelwicks, on behalf of the Island Pathways board says, “We are very grateful for this grant as we could not do this project without this financial support. We think these panels will enhance any walk on the GVPN by sharing a bit of history of our island and perhaps stimulate islanders and visitors to find out more about the rich history of our island.”

The 2018 grants were overseen by a jury of four members and supported by Heritage BC staff.

About the Heritage Legacy Fund

Since June 2005, the Heritage Legacy Fund has supported heritage conservation in British Columbia with $1.8 million of project funding. The funds are made possible through a $5 million endowment established in 2003 by the Province of British Columbia.

Applications are received from non-profits, local governments and First Nations, seeking funding to support all kinds of heritage work from building maintenance to large scale conservation, from signage to exhibitions. Funding for heritage planning projects was added in 2017, and in 2018 a new funding stream was created to support partnership projects between heritage organizations and Indigenous peoples.

Of the over 125 grants provided to date, projects have included life safety upgrades to the Lim Sai Hor Kow Mock Benevolent Society building in Vancouver, the creation of a digital heritage trail on Bowen Island, the revitalization of the Miner’s Union Hall in Rossland and a BC Heritage Fairs online exhibit, to name a few.

About Heritage BC

Heritage BC is a charitable not-for-profit supporting heritage conservation across British Columbia through education, training and skills development, capacity building in heritage planning and funding through the Heritage Legacy Fund. We are passionate about building links between heritage conservation and tourism, economic and environmental sustainability, community pride and an appreciation of our common history.

Island Pathways has for 30 years been encouraging active transportation on SSI and has been instrumental with its partners, the CRD, SSI Transportation Commission, PARC and in creating the Ganges Village Pathway Network leading into and around Ganges.

July 3, 2018 11:38 AM