Sooke Fine Arts Society Receives $10,000 to Identify Arts and Cultural Assets

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The Sooke Fine Arts Society is leading a cultural mapping project to support long-term development in the region. Under the Creative Communities program, 2010 Legacies Now and the Province of British Columbia are providing $10,000 to the Society to develop an inventory of the area's arts and cultural resources.

Creative Communities supports local governments and arts organizations to understand their cultural assets and identify strengths and challenges in their arts and cultural sector. The Society will work together with the District of Sooke, Sooke Community Arts Council and Sooke Regional Tourism Association on mapping resources from Sooke to Port Renfrew.

The project aims to consolidate data on arts, cultural and heritage organizations; to identify strengths and gaps in services; to integrate the arts into regional planning; to support economic development and tourism; and, to expand participation with a focus on First Nations and youth engagement.

"This project provides a much-needed chance for those involved in arts and culture to work together and gain a thorough understanding of the local region," said Evonne Black, spokesperson for the Sooke Fine Arts Society. "The resulting cultural inventory will provide crucial information to be used in the region's cultural development."

Together with the Province of British Columbia, 2010 Legacies Now has invested more than $300,000 into 39 Creative Communities projects around the province, and $3.9 million in the arts overall through its contribution programs.

"We are working to ensure that legacies from the 2010 Winter Games are being shared by communities right across B.C. through investments in arts and cultural projects," said Kevin Krueger, Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Arts. "Creative Communities supports the long-term development of arts and culture in B.C."

Lori Baxter, Director of Arts for 2010 Legacies Now said, "As the region plans community developments, this is an exciting way for local government to work collaboratively with arts and business groups to learn about how the cultural sector can benefit the region."

Creative Communities assisted local governments to take stock of their cultural assets and identify strengths and challenges in their local arts and cultural sector. The program also guided governments through community consultations to determine how and where to expand local arts and cultural programs and projects.

Funding was available for these cultural mapping and cultural planning processes to help communities discover a cultural identity that is unique to them and expand it into a viable part of community life. The program was supported by the Province of British Columbia.