The Minister of Seniors and Accessibility, Raymond Cho, got a chance to see how federal grant money has been put to work in South Algonquin Township.
Angela Pollak, board member of the South Algonquin Business Alliance (SABA), says the minister toured several locations last week that put federal grant money towards accessibility improvements in Whitney and Madawaska. The Minister, along with MPP John Yakabuski and MP Cheryl Gallant, visited six different sites and toured each business improvement. These improvements included things like an outdoor accessible kitchen, ramps, accessible bathrooms, a barrier-free shower and electronic doors, all paid through grant money.
Pollak believes that these improvements are exactly what the minister is looking for. As the ministry looks to open physical spaces up to those with accessibility needs, the tour showed what that looks like on the ground.
On top of the accessibility bonuses, Pollak says that these improvements cause ripple effects for the business community as a whole. While the grants were relatively small, they were enough to generate more business and revenue in the community. It also makes the area a welcoming place for all people and increases tourism.
Pollak says after the visit, SABA is looking forward to good things in the future. Their goal is to increase the amount of grant money that goes into the community by 2025.