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Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Minister Christopher Mitchelmore visited the province's south coast for several days last week, announcing over $300,000 in funding for economic and business development initiatives while he was in the region.
©Chris Mitchelmore (Twitter)
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Minister Christopher Mitchelmore announced nearly $340,000 for economic and business development initiatives during a trip to the province’s south coast last week.
The Mi’kmaq Alsumk Mowimsikik Koqoey Association is receiving $115,005 through the Regional Development Fund to create an Oceans Learning Partnership program in the Coast of Bays Region.
The group is a partnership of the Miawpukek First Nation and the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band.
The program will help raise awareness of aquatic resource management issues and concerns with Aboriginal youth and other young people in the region through youth initiatives. At the same time it will encourage their participation and input.
“Miawpukek First Nation is quite pleased with the funding from the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation to enable us to equip ‘The Wooden Heat’ vessel for experiential learning and youth engagement,” Miawpukek First Nation Chief Mi’sel Joe said in a news release.
“The expansion of the Ocean Learning program to the Coast of Bays is a very positive development not only for our Aboriginal youth but for all youth in the Coast of Bays. We look forward to working with the Ocean Learning Partnership team, Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association, the schools, and other partners to making this a great initiative.”
As well, the Miawpukek First Nation Band Council will receive $16,000 from the Regional Development Fund to look into the feasibility of re-purposing a former school building for alternate economic development use.
Carter Holdings Inc. will use funding of $149,920 from the Business Investment Fund for various developments, including structural improvements and quality upgrades to the Southern Port Hotel in Harbour Breton. The business is also adding four cottages to increase its accommodations capacity in the region.
“The assistance provided by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation has allowed us to upgrade our facilities to provide better services and quality accommodations to our customers,” said Bill Carter, the company’s owner.
“It also allows us to make additional personal investments in other amenities and services that will even further enhance our local tourism and hospitality business.
“We will also be increasing our capacity to allow more partnerships with other tourism operators such as tour buses to provide tourists the experiences that only exist on the south coast and in the Coast of Bays region.”
Meanwhile, a $59,000 term loan from the Business Investment Fund will help TayAus Diving Ltd., a new diving operation servicing the aquaculture industry in the Coast of Bays region.
The loan will assist the company in purchasing machinery and equipment and the completion of a building. It will also provide working capital for the initial start up.
“Funding for small businesses helped to start a much needed service for the aquaculture industry that is growing rapidly on the south coast. Funding through the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation was critical in getting my company up and running,” said TayAus Diving Ltd. owner Luke Ingersoll.