Excerpt from Community Futures Network of Canada - Annual Report 2020-21
PANDEMIC LIFELINE: THE REGIONAL RELIEF AND RECOVERY FUND (RRRF)
As the weeks wore on during the global pandemic, rural and remote businesses needed increasing levels of support, and the Community Futures voice of rural advocacy was heard.
Small businesses struggling with the economic impacts of COVID-19 in rural and remote Canada were able to rely on Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs) and Community Business Development Centres (CBDCs) for financial relief and recovery support in 2020 through the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF), made possible through the Government of Canada’s COVID 19 Economic Response Plan.
Based on the network’s long history of supporting rural communities and their businesses through complex and challenging times of crisis, $466,473,051 was allocated to the Community Futures Program nationally. The funding was directed towards struggling rural and remote small and medium sized businesses that desperately needed additional help to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and who were unable to access existing federal business support programs. Applications were made through 267 local CFDCs and CBDCs, offering flexible terms and repayment options.
The annual report focuses on a small sample of the many local businesses and initiatives that have benefited from the Community Futures Program and the Regional Relief and Recovery Program, and the ripple effect realized by investing in rural and remote communities now and in the future, as Canada rebuilds.