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Happy 2024 from VIEA! Strategic Plan Update, Plus Funding, Opportunity and Events

VIEA Strategic Plan Update

Guided by Ideas for Impact the VIEA Board convened at the Tigh-Na-Mara on January 12th and 13th to initiate VIEA’s strategic planning process. Over two inspiring and dynamic days, board members collaborated to create a shared vision for the next 3 years. This marked the initial phase of the planning process. Stay tuned as Ideas for Impact will be engaging with our members, partners, and collaborators, paving the way towards the creation of a comprehensive strategic planning document.

This plan will foster active engagement among stakeholders, enhance economic development frameworks, promote regional collaboration, and align priorities for economic prosperity in the Vancouver Island and rural islands region.


Board Members and Staff

Shannon Baikie, Andrea Thomas, Peter McKenzie, Julie Scurr, Dr. Nicole Vaugeois, Julie Sperber, Brad McRae, Dirk Heydemann, Katie Bishop, Janet Bonaguro, Gary Wilson, Diana Jolly, Kristi Fairholm Mader, Joel Thompson. Regrets Francis Frank and Angela Smith.

Photo Credit: HA Photography

Funding Programs

Project Zero Incubator Program

Do you have an innovative product or service that contributes to the circular economy? Applications are now open for the 2024 Project Zero Incubator Program.

Project Zero, run by the Synergy Foundation, is currently seeking early-stage start-ups and established businesses/non-profits with a new idea for a sustainable product or service to join our sixth cohort of this program. Accepted participants will receive support to write their business plans, learn entrepreneurial and operational skills, connect with mentors, and develop their business pitches for future investors.

The Incubator program is free to all accepted ventures and runs virtually from April through December 2024. This program is open to all entrepreneurs located across BC.

Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP)

Looking for help getting online and using technology to building your business? Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) offers two grants to support your business: Boost Your Business Technology and Grow Your Business Online.

Boost Your Business Technology grant gives you:

  • up to $15,000 to develop a Digital Adoption Plan
  • up to $100,000 in 0% interest loan from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) to implement your plan
  • up to $7,300 to hire a skilled youth to implement the technologies that can propel your business forward


Grow Your Business Online grant gives you:

  • up to $2,400 to setup e-commerce
  • Access to a network of more than 11,000 e-commerce advisors


Contact VIEA member VI Media for free consulting services to businesses with regards to the CDAP program.


Network for Inclusive Circular Employment (NICE) – Vancouver Island Roundtable Event – January 31, 2024

Do you reuse, repair, redistribute and/or recycle products, materials or organics?
Do you support those who seek meaningful employment?

Join the Share Reuse Repair Initiative with Synergy Foundation for the Network for Inclusive Circular Employment Roundtable in Victoria on January 31, 2024. This is an in-person event to share, gain insight, and make connections with circular businesses, and organizations supporting job seekers to increase inclusive jobs for the emerging circular economy.

Register here: to register January 24, 2024.

Blue Ocean Revolution on Feb 28 – 29, 2024: Jump into the Future…Today!

Join VIEA member Manatee Holdings Ltd., for this free 2-day virtual conference packed with insights, global networking, and unmatched funding opportunities… Right from your comfort zone!


Hupačasath First Nation is in the process of re-structuring its business structure and requires a Board of Directors to help lead economic development ventures and opportunities. This commitment will require between 10 and 12 meetings per year for a two-to-four-year term.

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