The Gleaner

Valley projects win financing from BIEC grants

The winners of the third edition of the Bourses d’Initiative en Entrepreneuriat Collectif de la Montérégie (BIEC) grants were announced on February 16. The list of laureates from across the Montérégie region includes Ambioterra and Les Jardins de la Résistance, which were awarded $12,500 and $7,500 for their respective projects.

In total, over $307,300 were awarded to 31 different organizations and businesses through the BIEC program, which aims to support collective entrepreneurship initiatives as well as the development of businesses and social economy projects.

“The elected officials of the Montérégie applaud the innovation and boldness displayed by the 31 winning businesses included in this third edition,” said Patrick Bousez, the president of the Table de concertation régionale de la Montérégie (TCRM) and mayor of Rivière-Beaudette.


Man standing if front of large old tree in forest
Reforesting is a key component of the battle against climate change.  PHOTO courtesy of Ambioterra.


“The BIEC is an important lever to support the realization of these initiatives. We estimate that all of the projects supported [in this round] represent a combined potential economic impact of over $5.6 million,” he added, while emphasizing the significance of such projects to the economic development of the region.
Local projects win big

The Saint-Chrysostome-based conservation organization, Ambio-terra, was rewarded for its ambitious project to create a regional nursery, which will produce trees and shrubs endemic to this area in an effort to reforest the region’s agricultural environments.

The organization is aiming to produce 20,000 plants within the first year, while gradually increasing the number to 50,000 depending on the success of the project. As trees and forests are reservoirs of atmospheric carbon dioxide, Ambioterra’s reforestation project could play a key role in mitigating the harmful effects of climate change at the local level.

The Co-op les Jardins de la Résistance received a grant to help cover the costs associated with the purchase of an electric cart for the maintenance of staked crops in its greenhouses. According to its project description, the team behind the Ormstown-based market garden will be able to replace the handmade step stools currently in use with a safe and more efficient self-propelled platform designed to work on soil.

The BIEC grants are made possible by the financial participation of the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the 12 MRCs in the Montérégie, as well as the agglomeration of Longueuil, Montérégie Économique, and the TCRM. The program is coordinated by the three Pôles d’économie sociale de la Montérégie. (SR)


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