Wednesday, March 02, 2011

14th Annual Victoria French Fest

La Societe francophone de Victoria is hosting the 14th French Fest (14e Festival de la francophonie) March 10th to 13th.  

I am a fan of community festivals and I like some of the events they will be having, I am concerned that this is primarily happening because of significant government funding.  The Festival has sponsorship from the BC government, the BC Arts Council, The City of Victoria, two different parts of Radio Canada and the federal government.   The society itself has sponsorship from the BC government, Heritage Canada, the Quebec government (seriously?).   It is also supported by Reso-Sante BC, a group working to ensure we have health services in French in BC, they seem to be 100% funded by Health Canada.  They are also supported by SDE CB, a French economic development corporation for BC.

We only have so much government money available to do what is needed in our society and it worries me when one group collects what would seem be to disproportionate amount of funding.  I have for a long time be concerned about non-profits that receive the vast majority of funding of their funding from the government.   It is a bad model and not sustainable over the long term.  It also ultimately harms the functioning of the non-profit as it becomes more and more run because of the funding sources than for any other reason.

I do not know if the Victoria francophone society gets the majority of their funding from government, but on the surface it looks like that.  I would like to see the society wean itself from government funding and develop a long term sustainable model to continue operating.
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