DAWSON CREEK, B.C. -A pair of non-profits in Dawson Creek are receiving almost $10,000 from B.C.’s Multiculturalism Grants program.

The Dawson Creek Literacy Society is receiving $4,840 for the Lake View Learning Centre, specifically for the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.

The event is described as a celebration of cultural diversity in Dawson Creek and the surrounding area and will feature food, poetry, music and dance. In a release, the society says the event hopes to promote goodwill, empathy and understanding while also reducing or completely eliminating racism and racial stereotyping.

The Lake View Learning Centre offers many learning and settlement services, including resources for newcomers to the area, as well as many learning opportunities for the community as a whole.

The Kiwanis Arts Centre Society is receiving $5,000 from the province for the Pillars of Our Community project. It is a collaborative project between local multicultural groups and artists to turn the pillars in the lobby into an area to tell the stories of those groups.

The society is known for its dance and music program but also provides rental space, childcare, group and guild opportunities, historical archives, an art space, and food service at Juice Five O.

A total of sixty organizations throughout the province are receiving grants to promote diversity.

According to a provincial release, the grant itself is provided to a large range of organizations that build intercultural talks, trust and understanding. The program also aims to challenge racism, hate and systemic barriers.

“Over the past two years, we’ve seen a staggering increase in racism and hate incidents in B.C.,” said Rachna Singh, Parliamentary Secretary for Anti-Racism Initiatives.

“These grants are one of many steps in our fight against racism, helping organizations on the ground address systemic racism. This is important work, and I am grateful to everyone stepping up to build anti-racist workplaces and communities.”

The province also mentions that anti-racism data legislation will be introduced this spring. Thanks to extensive community engagement, this legislation will help the government identify inequalities in programs and services.

They are also going to provide funding to support several anti-racism initiatives, reinstate the B.C. Human Rights Commission, review the Police Act, develop an anti-racism action plan for K to Grade 12, tackle anti-Indigenous racism in health care, work to introduce a new anti-racism act, and develop a multilingual racist-incident hotline according to the release.