The Richmond Arts Awards and the Richmond Maritime Festival will receive a cash injection after being endorsed by a bank.
The two City of Richmond-run events, along with the new rooftop garden at the Richmond Cultural Centre, are now being supported by the Canadian Western Bank (CWB).
CWB announced its partnership with the city at the grand opening of its first Richmond branch on Wednesday.
The one-year agreement will be a very welcome boost for the arts awards, which, until this week, had not attracted a major sponsor.
"Our city is committed to working with the business community and other stakeholders to enrich the quality of life for all of our citizens, and this new partnership will help us achieve that goal," said Mayor Malcolm Brodie after the announcement was made.
Under the agreement, CWB is contributing $50,000 to become the presenting sponsor of the new rooftop garden as well.
Opened last fall, the garden is home to innovative programs ranging from growing food in small spaces to water conservation techniques.
The facility's green oasis area can be used as an outdoor space for a variety of cultural centre programs and events.
CWB will also be the presenting sponsor for this year's 4th annual Richmond Arts Awards, held in April, and a platinum sponsor of the 9th annual Richmond Maritime Festival, held in August.
Meanwhile, local registered non-profit arts and culture organizations are being given another opportunity to apply for funding through the new interim Arts and Culture Grants Program, thanks to a new, extended deadline of Feb. 3.
The interim 2012 Arts and Culture Grants Program offers two types of grants: Project assistance and operating assistance. These categories of grants were developed to strengthen the infrastructure of arts and culture organizations in Richmond, invest in arts opportunities, show support for the careers of local artists and support a wide range of artistic and cultural activities.
The program has been welcomed enthusiastically by arts and culture groups and policy makers.
Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to, public events, exhibitions and artist residencies. Details regarding eligibility, deadlines and application processes are available online at www.richmond.ca/artists.