Published On: Wednesday, 01 November 2017

Central Island Organizations Collaborate on EcDev Strategy

Central Island Organizations Collaborate on EcDev Strategy

COURTENAY – Five leading organizations with a vested interest in economic development in the Ladysmith area have received funding from the Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET) to create a single, comprehensive economic development strategy.

The groups - Economic Development Cowichan, Town of Ladysmith, Ladysmith Downtown BIA, Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce and the Stz’uminus First Nations have come together in a working partnership to create a Ladysmith Economic Development Strategy.

“Our organizations have established working relationships and we have many common areas of interest,” says Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce President Tammy Leslie. “This project will bring us all together under one banner, creating a common economic development vision and action plan, which we will then all help to implement with effective resource allocation.”

The project is receiving 50% of its funding from ICET, through the Strategic Planning stream of the Economic Development Readiness program.

“The challenge that this project overcomes is not uncommon in communities around our region,” says ICET Chair Phil Kent. “The Ladysmith region stakeholders have been collaborating for years, but this project will enable them to take those partnerships to the operational level, sharing resources and joint responsibility for implementation of the various pieces of the roadmap.”

Next steps for the project is to create a steering committee who will oversee the assessment of existing plans, priorities, and documents. The group will then engage community stakeholders in a consultation process, which will lead to the creation of the comprehensive three-year implementation strategy.

The process gets underway in November with completion anticipated in late spring 2018.