The Blue Mountains council has voted to provide a $5,000 grant to the Institute of Southern Georgian Bay.
Institute President Rosalyn Morrison met with council at its committee of the whole meeting on June 21 and outlined the institute’s purpose, goals and objectives.
Working in Meaford, The Blue Mountains, Grey Highlands, Collingwood, Wasaga Beach and Clearview the institute as a vision statement of: “Harness the power of people and place in Southern Georgian Bay to grow social, environmental, and economic prosperity and be the smartest, greenest, healthiest and most caring region in Ontario.”
The institute’s stated purpose is: “Connect and engage the talent and aspirations of all residents, and leaders in business, government, nonprofits, and philanthropy. We promote collaboration in five interconnected priority areas – arts and culture, social justice, the environment, business and social innovation, and health and wellbeing," said Morrison. “Our fundamental purpose is to connect people.”
Members of council were enthusiastic about the work the institute is doing and were happy to support a request for a $5,000 grant.
“It’s very impressive what you’re doing. You’re bringing knowledge that wouldn’t readily be available to all of us,” said Coun. Paula Hope. "I see the value all the time and think we’re getting a good return.”
Mayor Alar Soever said the institute can play a vital role in advancing common regional interests.
“This is a great enterprise that you’re undertaking. We have so many issues that are regional in nature,” said Soever, noting that the size of southern Georgian Bay is immense. “It’s 100,000 people and it’s larger than most counties in the province. In the various communities, there is a different level of interest in looking at us as a region. Some municipalities are more enthusiastic than others.”
The mayor also suggested that Morrison make a presentation to both Grey and Simcoe counties about the institute’s work and goals.
“That might be interesting,” he said.
The committee voted in favour of the institute’s financial request and the resolution will come before council for a final decision at a future meeting.