PSF funds 48 local salmon projects, leveraging $2 million in total value for communities
Vancouver, B.C. – The Pacific Salmon Foundation (PSF) has granted $227,828 to 48 community-led salmon conservation, enhancement, and habitat restoration projects across British Columbia. These projects represent $2 million in total value of salmon stewardship work.
The Community Salmon Program, launched by PSF in 1989, empowers volunteers, local streamkeepers, Indigenous communities, and schools to take action to conserve and rehabilitate Pacific salmon and their habitats.
In the 33 years since its inception, PSF’s Community Salmon Program has awarded $25.9 million in grants to more than 3,000 projects across B.C. and the Yukon and engaged roughly 30,000 volunteers. Successful projects have included salmon habitat restoration, aquatic monitoring and research, emergency flood initiatives, hatcheries, and educational programming and outreach.
The Community Salmon Program accepts new applications each spring and fall. The federal Salmon Conservation Stamp, a decal which anglers purchase with their saltwater fishing licence that enables them to keep any species of wild salmon, is the primary funding source for the program. PSF proudly stewards 100 per cent of the proceeds from the Salmon Conservation Stamp on behalf of Fisheries and Oceans Canada to advance hundreds of local salmon conservation projects each year.
“Salmon face countless struggles, but with our help, they can recover. We depend on community-led initiatives to restore and protect Pacific salmon. We are thankful to the passionate people for salmon who leverage the Pacific Salmon Foundation’s Community Salmon Program to uplift their grassroots stewardship efforts,” says Michael Meneer, CEO and president of the Pacific Salmon Foundation.
For the fall 2022 funding cycle, demand for Community Salmon Program grants was three times the amount of funds available – a new record for funding requests in program history.
“As demand for Community Salmon Program funds increases, we encourage you to make a tax-deductible donation to PSF to ensure this program and others that support salmon continue. At PSF, we’re salmon first, salmon always—and we don’t go it alone,” says Meneer.
See below to learn how three current Community Salmon Program recipients are making a difference for salmon.
Community Salmon Program dollars in action
Fish-friendly flood infrastructure in the Lower Fraser
More than 150 flood control structures in the Lower Mainland block an estimated 1,500 kilometres of potential salmon habitat.
Resilient Waters – a collaboration between MakeWay Charitable Society, Lower Fraser Fisheries Alliance, Watershed Watch Salmon Society, more than 10 First Nations groups, and many other organizations and local governments – seeks to reconnect vital wild salmon habitat by modernizing aging flood-control infrastructure to restore fish passage in tributaries adjacent to the Lower Fraser River. Upgrading or modifying outdated floodgates, pumps, and dikes will benefit salmon ecosystems and help reduce flood risk.
The project assesses habitat quality and fish passage at 25 high-priority sites scattered across the Lower Fraser basin with fieldwork led by Pearson Ecological. PSF funding will help cover the costs of genetic analysis of samples of Chinook and coho salmon to determine the origin of salmon accessing (or attempting to access) lower Fraser floodplain habitats.
Reviving estuarine habitat in Port Alberni
Only 36 per cent of natural area in the Somass Estuary in Port Alberni, B.C. remains intact due to alteration from agricultural, industrial, water management and development pressures. The estuary supports up to 30 million salmon smolts as they transition to the ocean.
A multi-year project led by the Alberni Valley Enhancement Association with support from 12 volunteers aims to re-establish a historic flood channel in the Somass Estuary to facilitate access for salmon to the highly productive estuarine habitat. The goal is to reconnect 380 metres of habitat from the Somass River to Shoemaker Bay.
To date, the group has constructed a bridge and started the channel excavation process. Currently in the third year of the project, a PSF grant will support the completion of the channel excavation to re-naturalize the habitat.
Improving water quality in the Somenos Watershed
The Somenos watershed, a sub-watershed of the Cowichan Valley, has long faced ecological pressures from development, agriculture, and industrial activity. Over time, these disturbances have led to a decline in water quality — a major limiting factor for salmon recovery. Chum salmon historically spawned at inflow streams of Somenos Lake but can no longer due to low dissolved oxygen levels. Coho salmon currently have limited access to the spawning grounds, but their passage is at risk if creek conditions continue to decline.
A multi-year project by Somenos Marsh Wildlife Society, in partnership with Cowichan Tribes and the Municipality of North Cowichan, aims to improve water quality and restore salmon back to historical numbers. Through their GreenStreams Strategy, they restore and protect riparian areas with research, ecological restoration, citizen science programs, and community partnerships.
With funding support from PSF, the Somenos Marsh Wildlife Society will replace an aging water quality meter and in-stream temperature sensors to
The Community Salmon Program is currently accepting applications for the spring 2023 cycle until Feb. 15, 2023. Apply here.
The Community Salmon Program also benefits from corporations with sustainability goals. Trans Mountain, Mosaic Forest Management, BC Hydro, Methanex, Seaspan, Paper Excellence, Secure Energy, Neptune Terminals, ENCORP PACIFIC, Sutherland Foundation Inc., and Pembina Pipeline support the program. Interested businesses can contact PSF’s Senior Business Development Manager Cory Matheson at email@example.com.
A full list of recipients for the fall 2022 Community Salmon Program funding cohort includes:
|Applicant||Project Title||Funding confirmed $||Project Value $|
|A Rocha Canada – Houston project||Upper Bulkley Riparian Corridor and Stream Restoration||13,365||42,530|
|Alberni Valley Enhancement Association||Somass Estuary Flood Channel||19,800||175,000|
|BC Conservation Foundation||Community-Based Social Marketing workshop||2,500||7,135|
|BC Wildlife Federation||Stewardship Workshop and Education||10,000||142,700|
|Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society||Mitigating 6 PPD-Q in stormwater runoff||2,500||5,300|
|Cameron Elementary School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,550|
|Campus View Elementary||Stream of Dreams at Campus View Elementary||3,000||18,314|
|Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society||BC Parks Guide 2022||2,500||36,000|
|Champlain Heights Annex||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,570|
|Chicago Creek Community Env. Enhancement Society||Mission Creek Fence Rebuilding Completion||10,362||212,150|
|Chute Creek Stewardship Society||Chute Creek Habitat Restoration||2,500||126,800|
|Cliff Drive Elementary||Stream of Dreams at Cliff Drive Elementary||3,000||12,145|
|Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre Society||Restore Chum and Coho Rearing Habitat, Fish Gut Alley, Lower Cowichan River||5,544||18,040|
|David Lloyd George School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,950|
|Deroche Elementary||Forest & Stream Restoration-Phase 3||1,500||4,625|
|Don Ross Middle School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,300||3,100|
|Dorothy Lynas Elementary||Stream of Dreams at Dorothy Lynas Elementary||3,000||21,447|
|East Chilliwack Elementary School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,550|
|École Pauline Johnson||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,550|
|Edith Cavell Elementary||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,870|
|F.W. Howay Elementary||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,550|
|Gavin Lake Forest Education Society||Aquatic Insects as indicators program||2,500||10,240|
|George Jay Elementary School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,000||2,100|
|Gibsons Marine Education Centre Society||Healthy Harbour – Gibsons Harbour Clean-up and Restoration||5,828||19,160|
|Gitksan Watershed Authorities||McCully Creek Restoration Initiative||17,688||77,045|
|Guardians of Mid Island Estuaries Society||Eco-Cultural Restoration of Salish Sea Estuaries (annual funding request 1/5)||24,250||209,500|
|HT Thrift Elementary||Salmonids in the Classroom||600||1,200|
|John Norquay||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,350|
|MakeWay Charitable Society||Resilient Waters Genetic Analysis of 25 priority Lower Fraser Tributaries||5,000||206,150|
|Morten Creek SEP||Hatchery Maintenace, Including Bridge Repair||1,500||4,060|
|Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society||Science in the Park – Salmon Run days||1,600||8,160|
|Northern Vancouver Island Salmonid Enhancement Association||SEP 2023 Workshop||14,773||116,575|
|Nuxalk Stewardship Office||Nuxalk Sockeye Recovery Program||15,000||247,738|
|Peninsula Streams Society||Long-term Salmon Monitoring & Stewardship in Four Greater Victoria Watersheds||16,500||194,500|
|Qayqayt Elementary||Stream of Dreams at Qayqayt Elementary||3,000||24,211|
|Queens Park Preschool Society||Stream of Dreams @ Queens Park Preschool||1,200||3,867|
|Semiahmoo Fish and Game Club – Little Campbell Hatchery||Little Campbell Hatchery||2,468||4,988|
|Somenos Marsh Wildlife Society||GreenStreams Community Stewardship Program||5,145||63,396|
|Sooke School District||Salmonids in the Classroom||563||1,125|
|Sperling Elementary||Salmonids in the Classroom||700||1,700|
|St. Andrew’s School||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,450|
|St. Anthony’s School||Stream of Dreams at St Anthony||2,798||9,147|
|St. Pius X School||Salmonids in the Classroom||360||1,810|
|Sts’ailes community school||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,450|
|Sunshine Coast Streamkeepers Society||Sechelt Streamkeepers Assessment Testing Equipment||2,184||4,384|
|Walnut Road||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||1,900|
|West Bay Elementary||Salmonids in the Classroom||1,650||3,650|
|Yorkson Watershed Enhancement Society||Yorkson Watershed Floodplain Restoration||2,500||7,940|