The new logo for a program to help promote buying local.

Feel the love

Local businesses in Fort St. James will receive an extra boost in the coming months as part of a “Love Fort St. James” buy local campaign

Local businesses in Fort St. James will receive an extra boost in the coming months as part of a “Love Fort St. James” buy local campaign piloted by Northern Development Initiative Trust.

The project will celebrate home grown businesses and their contributions to the local economy, while encouraging citizens to consider the wide variety of products available in town.

The program will also help celebrate the personal connections which take place between consumers and business owners when they support independent businesses.

The Northern Development-led pilot program supports the development of strongly branded buy-local campaigns for six communities including Fort St. James, Vanderhoof, Burns Lake, Logan Lake, 100 Mile House and Valemount.

Each community will have their own website that will promote local businesses through high-end photography.

A website to support Fort St James’ involvement will be located at www.lovefortstjames.com in the coming days.

To fund the website development and graphic design of the project, Northern Development’s board of directors approved $75,000 to include all six pilot communities. To execute the project, Northern Development will contract the services of Amy Quarry, who launched a similar project in Quesnel that engaged more than 50 local businesses.  Quarry will provide the branding materials for the Love Fort St. James initiative, and will work with the District’s Economic Development Department to engage local business owners in the project and coordinate professional photographs of each business involved in the campaign.

“The Small Town Love project is a great opportunity for local businesses in Fort St. James to collaborate and promote what products and services are locally available to the community,” said Mayor Rob MacDougall. “We’re very excited as this helps us to build a critical awareness for community members, business and industry to highlight the benefits of shopping locally, in turn helping to strengthen the resilience of our local economy.”

Businesses and community members interested in learning more about the Love Fort St. James campaign should contact Emily Colombo, economic development officer for the District of Fort St. James at 250-996-8233 or by emailing  edo@fortstjames.ca.