The Natural History Centre is thrilled to acknowledge recent grants that support our Centre’s short and long-term visioning and reopening process, and offer relief during these challenging times. After the fire at the school where we were located in August 2018, followed by the cancellation of our Spring and Summer programming because of Covid-19, the time is right for in-depth planning and reimagining of our exhibits and programming.
Thanks to the Hornby Island Economic Enhancement Corporation (HICEEC) for granting us $2500 towards the planning and research required for reopening the Natural History Centre. The grant will also allow us to create Nature Exploration Backpack Kits that families can rent from us for experiential learning activities with safety protocols in place. An integral part of these kits is to encourage respect and appreciation for the environment, promoting low-impact exploration of the natural world.
Thanks to the Comox Valley Community Foundation (CVCF) and the Hornby Island Community Fund (HICF) for $1200 towards our “Phoenix Planning Project – planning for the future of the Hornby Island Natural History Centre.” This grant will support the first stage of our reopening process, visioning for a new Natural History Centre designed to meet the community’s needs during these changing times.
These grants support a vigorous and practical visioning, planning, and preparation session that our committee will begin in the new year. We are excited to undertake this project with the guidance and expertise of Michelle Willard, a successful museum consultant with 20 years of experience in the Comox Valley. Michelle and colleagues have an organization called Mighty Museum. Mighty Museum is “a consulting group of experienced professionals inspired by the potential of museums as powerful platforms for positive social change.” Together, we will develop a viable, sustainable financial plan to ensure the future of a dynamic new Natural History Centre. This includes reimagining our exhibits and programming, designing displays, and reopening our new space with Covid-19 protocols in place by Spring 2023.
Much gratitude to HICF, HICEEC, and CVCF for making this important visioning process and collaboration possible!
Additionally, a big thanks goes to the Heritage Canada Museum Assistance Program (MAP) for a grant received in September 2020, which will help the Natural History Centre cover some of our lost fundraising opportunities and help cover some of our operating expenses due to Covid-19.