Tbaytel today announced $20,000 for a new funding program taking place in 2017 that will enable individuals, groups and not-for-profit organizations in northern Ontario to create and implement projects that bring more good to neighbourhoods and communities.

The Tbaytel for Good Community Fund’s Good Community program is a new funding opportunity that will run during two campaigns in 2017, offering eligible organizations in northern Ontario’s diverse not-for-profit sectors the opportunity to complete projects during 2017-18. Community groups or committees are also eligible to apply by partnering with a registered organization for a project endorsement.

Applications will be shortlisted to five semi-finalists by a panel of judges and then the public will vote to decide which two projects will receive $5,000 for each campaign. “The Good Community program will enhance the good work being undertaken by dedicated volunteers and organizations across the Tbaytel serving territory,” says Dan Topatigh, president and CEO of Tbaytel. “By launching the first ever Good Community program, we’re opening opportunities for local and regional organizations operating in the sectors of animal welfare, community wellness, recreation and culture, environment, and innovation and technology.”

For spring 2017, Tbaytel for Good is also bringing back the Good Neighbour funding program, which provides up to $500 for local neighbourhood initiatives. The funding is available for original ideas that add to the beautification, quality of life or sense of community for residents living in northern Ontario neighbourhoods. “The merit of the Good Neighbour program is that it is open to people of all ages and offers financial support to neighbours, families or groups who want to do good deeds where they live,” says Topatigh. “Tbaytel will be especially excited to see applications that promote pride, passion and togetherness among residents for a more vibrant northern Ontario.”

Several community groups and organizations were gathered at the announcement, which included an award of $500 to a local volunteer who is helping newcomer youth settle into a new life in the region. At the event, a challenge was also issued to the local and regional community to start celebrating the many other individuals and organizations who do good deeds every day to make northern Ontario a better place to live. Tbaytel is inviting the public to share photos, videos and stories on its official Facebook and Tbaytel for Good Instagram pages until March 31, 2017 to say thank you using the hashtag #GoodCommunity or #GoodNeighbour.

At a glance:
 A total of $32,500 in project funding is available for 2017
 Application deadline for spring Good Community program is May 2, 2017
 Application deadline for Good Neighbour program is May 16, 2017
 Projects should be a new or enhanced activity
 All project activities must take place within the serving territory of Tbaytel and must occur between June 1, 2017 and June 1, 2018
 Voting will take place between May 26, 2017 and June 8, 2017
 All spring campaign winners will be announced on June 9, 2017
 The Good Schools program will return later in 2017 along with the second installment of the Good Community program

An independent panel of judges will assess the applications and select the recipients of the Good Neighbour program funding as well as the five semi-finalists for the Good Community program funding.