Government of Canada shows its pride by supporting 2SLGBTQAI+ events in Vancouver

News release

$450,000 to support Vancouver Pride Society and 2SLGBTQAI+ community

Funding will support the Vancouver Pride Society to expand its programming during the Vancouver Pride Festival and beyond

Sunday, July 31, 2022 – Vancouver, British Columbia – Pacific Economic Development Canada

COVID-19 had a significant impact on Canadian tourism as travel restrictions, both domestically and internationally, reduced visits to attractions across the country. The Government of Canada created the Tourism Relief Fund (TRF) to support tourism businesses and organizations, like the Vancouver Pride Society, to invest in their future growth while safely welcoming visitors once again.

Today, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan), announced $450,000 in funding to the Vancouver Pride Society (VPS) to expand its programming by adding additional events during the Vancouver Pride Festival in the summer as well as new events in the fall and winter seasons.

For over forty years, the Vancouver Pride Society (VPS) has produced events that were critical to advocating for and celebrating the 2SLGBTQAI+ community in the Lower Mainland. In 2022, the VPS’ signature programming returned to in-person, community-focused events that draw an estimated 400,000 spectators to downtown Vancouver.

Federal funding will help the VPS offer new programming that will boost the local economy and strengthen the community by attracting over 15,000 more 2SLGBTQAI+ visitors and allies from across Canada and around the world.

The Government of Canada continues to deliver on its plan for a robust economic recovery, including supporting tourism businesses and community spaces as they resume their activities safely. In British Columbia, the TRF is being delivered by PacifiCan, the Government of Canada’s new regional development agency dedicated to strengthening British Columbia’s economy.


“The Vancouver Pride Festival is a marquee celebration in Vancouver that ensures 2SLGBTQAI+ Canadians and allies have accessible and inclusive opportunities to come together and celebrate our diversity. The Tourism Relief Fund will help the Vancouver Pride Society safely deliver expanded programming, while enhancing Vancouver’s reputation as a premier destination for the 2SLGBTQAI+ community in Canada and abroad.”

- The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada

“Pride festivals across Canada are important places for the LGBTQ2 community and allies to come together to celebrate and advocate. Vancouver is known worldwide as a welcoming and inclusive tourism destination, and our government will continue to support Vancouver Pride Society to build a more equitable Canada.”

- Marci Ien, Minister for Women, Gender Equality, and Youth

“Vancouver Pride is excited to use these funds to enhance our programming that celebrates and uplifts the 2SLGBTQAI+ community through an intersectional lens. These funds will allow us to better welcome visitors from around our beautiful province, country and the world to join us in enjoying and experiencing a wide and rich range of queer programming. We are very thankful to the folks at the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada for this tremendous opportunity.”

- Lee Keple, Interim Executive Director, Vancouver Pride Society

“Our Government has always been supportive of LGBTQ+ communities. So I am pleased to be part of this announcement to give Vancouver Pride 400k so that they can do outreach and more spring and year round events. Happy Pride!”

- The Honourable Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament, Vancouver Centre

“The Canadian tourism sector continues to be one of the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are fully committed to supporting businesses and organizations through these challenging times, keeping safety as the top priority while ensuring they get support to quickly recover, innovate their products and services, and thrive. The Tourism Relief Fund will help businesses and organizations adapt, make improvements, and be ready to welcome back guests. It also feeds into a broader strategy to help the sector survive the pandemic, recover and grow. The Canadian economy will not fully recover until our tourism sector recovers.”

-  The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre

Quick facts

  • The TRF will help position Canada as a destination of choice as domestic and international travel rebounds by:

    • empowering tourism businesses to create new or enhance existing tourism experiences and products to attract more local and domestic visitors
    • helping the sector reposition itself to welcome international visitors, by providing the best Canadian tourism experiences we have to offer the world
  • Eligible applicants include tourism entities that cater mainly to visitors, such as:

    • businesses
    • not-for-profit organizations, such as tourism associations
    • band councils or other Indigenous organizations and cooperatives.
  • PacifiCan is the regional development agency dedicated to British Columbia. PacifiCan promotes growth and diversification in British Columbia’s economy by enhancing innovation, improving business competitiveness, and promoting inclusive growth.

Associated links


Haley Hodgson
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Economic Development

Ben Letts
A/Communications Manager
Pacific Economic Development Canada

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