Venture Niagara Supports 97 Local Businesses through Government of Canada’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund

News Release
For Immediate Release

Venture Niagara Supports 97 Local Businesses through
Government of Canada’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund

Niagara businesses have received $3.5 million in RRRF loans to mitigate the impact of COVID-19

April 6, 2021                                                                                          Thorold ON

Small businesses are at the heart of our economy and many are vital to this community. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused uncertainty for businesses and their employees. Since May 2020, $436.4 million has been made available under the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund to southern Ontario businesses through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), including $83.3 million in targeted rural support delivered by Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs).

Since then, Venture Niagara Community Futures Development Corporation provided more than $3.5million in liquidity support to help 97 businesses impacted by the pandemic to cover fixed operating costs and maintain 212 jobs. The funding is making a difference in the Niagara region by providing businesses the support they need to navigate the uncertainty of the pandemic while finding ways to grow for the future.

For example, Historic Old Ivy Walk Luxury Bed & Breakfast Country Inn, one of the many Bed and Breakfast operators in Niagara-on-the-Lake, lost a significant amount of business because of the pandemic. Old Ivy Walk Luxury Bed & Breakfast Country Inn was clearly impacted by the closure of the Canada / US border, the closure of Shaw Festival, the cancellation of various local festivals and events and lockdowns at the outset of the pandemic and then again in December.

With RRRF support through Venture Niagara Community Futures Development Corporation, the business is readying for guests once pandemic conditions subside and it is safe to accept visitors who are eager to enjoy a Niagara-on-the-Lake getaway.

Quotes
“Venture Niagara’s team of staff and volunteers were eager to accept the challenge of delivering financial support to help Niagara businesses survive the pandemic. We have been reviewing applications, approving the requests, and providing loans on a non-stop basis since the late spring of 2020. We see the difference the money has made to the
survival – even growth of many of the recipients of the RRRF Loans.”
- Frank Rupcic, General Manager, Venture Niagara Community Futures Development Corporation

“It was incredibly reassuring to have Venture Niagara’s support during the pandemic. Receiving RRRF quickly made all the difference; the process was straightforward, and we were able to focus our time on managing the business through this challenging time."
- Philip Thornber, Old Ivy Walk Luxury Bed & Breakfast Country Inn.

"We launched the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund at a time when the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic was sky-high. We knew that Community Futures Development Corporations were in a unique position to help deliver this fund using their local expertise. Now, we are seeing the targeted results of that support, thanks to CFDCs supporting rural businesses and entrepreneurs during these challenging times. We want Canadians to know, we were there for you then, and we will be there for you in the months to come as we work together to come back even stronger."
-The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

“The businesses, workers and organizations in southern Ontario’s rural communities are a significant part of our region’s economic strength. We know they have faced challenges because of the pandemic, and it is reassuring to see that the local support that our CFDCs have delivered through the RRRF is making a difference for many of them.”
- Marie-France Lalonde, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (FedDev Ontario and Official Languages)

Quick Facts
• Venture Niagara provided more than $3.5 million to Niagara businesses to navigate the challenges of the COVID 19 pandemic.
• CFDCs deliver a wide variety of programs and services to support community economic development and small business growth. They employ local staff and are each governed by a volunteer board of directors, made up of local residents representing the community.
• In southern Ontario, FedDev Ontario is supporting local businesses and organizations, saving tens of thousands of jobs through over $436 million in RRRF funding.

Associated Links
www.ventureninagara.com
FedDev Ontario
Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

Contacts
Frank Rupcic
General Manager, Venture Niagara
905.680.8085 ext. 23#                                                                                                          frankr@ventureniagara.com