City of Whitehorse contributes to Arctic prize

Whitehorse has become the first Canadian municipality to provide money to the Arctic Innovation Prize.

Whitehorse has become the first Canadian municipality to provide money to the Arctic Innovation Prize.

City council approved a one-time $10,000 donation on Monday.

The prize has been around since 2012. Every year, Canadian millionaire Arnold Witzig provides $1 million for the prize. It funds “numerous Arctic-based initiatives that focus on the areas of education, human health, socio-cultural issues, the environment and the economy,” according to a report presented to council.

Last year, the Recreation and Parks Association of the Yukon (RPAY) and Yukon-born Olympic cyclist Zach Bell received $600,000 for a recreation training project across all three territories.

On top of Witzig’s annual contribution, the trust foundation that manages the money is looking for cash from local governments and businesses to grow the pot.

“His vision some day is that it will grow to $3 million a year for Canada’s North,” representative Patti Balsillie told council earlier this month.

Several Yukon organizations including the Yukon government and Air North are current partners of the prize, according to the report.

The deadline to nominate an organization for the 2016 Arctic Inspiration Prize is Sept. 30.

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