FIR Program | Business Recovery Funding


The Forest Impact Recovery (FIR) program provides funding to rural communities impacted by mill closures/curtailments, old growth deferment, and reduction in timber supply due to natural disasters such as flooding, wildfires, beetle infestation etc. 

Golden, Columbia Valley, through Kimberley, Cranbrook, Jaffray, Elkford, Fernie, and Sparwood will have access to qualified contractors (Community and/or Business Advisors) to provide advisory and support services to affected businesses and/or develop community economic diversification strategies. 

The Cranbrook Chamber is proud to lead this ETSI-BC funded, collaborative approach to this project.


  • EVEI (Elk Valley Economic Initiative)
  • CFEK (Community Futures East Kootenay)
  • KES (Kootenay Employment Services)
  • Golden Community Economic Development
  • Kicking Horse Chamber of Commerce
  • Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce
  • Fernie Chamber of Commerce

This project will include a strong focus on retooling all businesses (not just forestry businesses) to prepare for shifts in the forest industry. In addition to working directly with businesses to prepare for industry shifts, the role of advisors will be to support communities for long-term economic diversification. 

The focus of Advisor activities will be a combination of community economic recovery and business advisory services, while recovery and diversification efforts will consist of economic development planning, community-based research and analysis, sector development and economic diversification, and business investment and attraction. Advisory services will consist of business outreach, business recovery, and growth planning support. 

The intended economic benefits of this program will be future community investment, future local business investment, future capital (business) investment, business/job retention, business diversification / new products or services, business incubation, and collaboration of multiple groups. 

The partners in this project gratefully acknowledge the financial support of ETSI-BC, who have made this project possible.