Plan to enhance culture

Kelowna city council has endorsed a plan aimed at guiding its approach to arts and culture for the next five years.

Kelowna city council has endorsed a plan aimed at guiding its approach to arts and culture for the next five years.

The city’s new cultural plan, described by cultural services manger Sandra Kochan as a guide for planning and budgeting, contains 10 goals and 63 strategies to enhance Kelowna’s cultural vitality, measure cultural impact on the city and enhance what the plan calls the “cultural ecosystem.”

“A key aspect of this plan is that it builds on existing facilities, budgets and efforts of the community,” said Kochan in presenting the plan to council.

While the city provides support in key ways, true success, she said, will be based on leadership by, and partnerships with, others. And it’s in that context that council was asked to support the non-monetary initiatives in the report and move forward.

Kochan said while a number of improvement initiatives will require financial assistance to proceed, due to current economic conditions within the community and the country, city funding is not possible for those improvements.

So while the plan identifies strengths and weaknesses, Kochan said city staff will evaluate funding for specific projects individually in relation to future city budgets.

The cultural plan notes that Kelowna has excellent facilities and fiscal support, weaknesses include a lack of public awareness of what is happening here, a lack of youth involvement, high costs and a lack of affordable production space for artists.