Thompson Okanagan Tourism Micro Loan in Partnership with the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA)

TOTA logo

 tota tourism resiliency program






Community Futures Nicola Valley and eight other Community Futures offices in the Thompson Okanagan region are working in partnership with the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA) to assist the tourism industry in overcoming the challenges presented by the current COVID-19 crisis through the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Resiliency Program. In July 2020, a formal agreement was formed to create the Community Futures - TOTA Taskforce in commitment to the development of an active and meaningful relationship on the path to rebuilding a resilient tourism industry in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Community Futures - TOTA Taskforce is now offering the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Micro Loan Program for tourism businesses in the Nicola Valley area.

Thompson Okanagan Tourism Micro Loan Program

The Thompson Okanagan Tourism Micro Loan is in alignment with the previously announced Regional Relief & Recovery Fund (RRRF) which has provided $587,000 to more than 20 tourism businesses in the region, as of August 2020.

Micro loans start at $200, up to $25,000. Terms and conditions apply which are specific to each Community Futures office. 

How to Apply

To apply for a Tourism Micro Loan, tourism stakeholders must be referred to a Community Futures office by a Thompson Okanagan Tourism Resiliency Program Advisor.

The Tourism Resiliency Program offers many benefits, with no cost to participate. Participating companies will receive ongoing support from an advisor through one-on-one phone or video meetings. The advisor will develop a Business Support Plan and provide key updates to programs and services.

Register Online

or register by phone: 1-877-431-8489 (ext 8)

About Community Futures - TOTA Taskforce

The Community Futures - TOTA Taskforce will implement projects, access needed resources, and share best practices to revitalize, support, and grow the tourism sector, during the pandemic and beyond. Efforts and strategies will focus on tourism growth, development, sustainability, and long-term resiliency.

Helping the tourism industry recover and become more resilient for the long term is imperative. Ongoing exchange and discussion will facilitate further advancement of best practices relating to the development of sustainable communities and destinations. Specific joint strategies will target identification and support of business funding opportunities as well as advancing knowledge on the visitor experience, training, employment, and innovation.

For more information on the Community Futures - TOTA Taskforce email the Community Futures office or TOTA at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF)


Loans Up to $40,000

The Government of Canada and Community Futures organizations (CFs) understand the difficulties the COVID-19 pandemic has caused the small business community throughout the West. As a result, the Government of Canada has made funds available to the CFs to provide support and assistance to SMEs through the rural stream of the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF).

Small business owners impacted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic can apply for loans up to $40,000 through the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF).

The Regional Relief and Recovery Fund provides funding to support businesses that have not been approved for supports through the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) or the Emergency Loan Program delivered through Aboriginal Financial Institutions.



General Details

  • Maximum loan of $40,000;
  • 0% interest until December 31, 2022;
  • No principal payments until December 31, 2022;
  • Principal repayments can be voluntarily made at any time without penalty;
  • No prepayment penalties;
  • 25% (not to exceed $10,000) can be forgiven provided the Client has paid 75% of the original loan amount prior to December 31, 2022;
  • If the Client is unable to repay the loan by December 31, 2022, the loan will be converted to a three-year term loan with interest rates up to 5%, effective January 1, 2023; and
  • The full balance must be repaid no later than December 31, 2025. 


Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) located in
Aspen Grove, Brookmere, Douglas Lake, Lower Nicola, Upper Nicola, Merritt and Quilchena. In addition, SME’s located in the following Bands that include: Lower Nicola Indian Band, Upper Nicola Indian Band, Shackan Indian Band, Nooaitch Indian Band, and Coldwater Indian Band.

Eligible Uses for Loan Funding

The funds from this loan shall only be used by the Borrower to pay non-deferrable operating expenses of the Borrower including, without limitation, payroll, rent, utilities, insurance, property tax and regularly scheduled debt service, and may not be used to fund any payments or expenses such as prepayment/refinancing of existing indebtedness, payments of dividends, distributions and increases in management compensation. Note that funds from this loan cannot be used to pay expenses already supported through the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy or the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance.

Eligible Applicants for RRRF Loans

Small-and-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and Social Enterprises taking into account the following:

  • Established prior to March 1, 2020;
  • Impacted adversely due to the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Viable and not experiencing financial pressures prior to March 1, 2020; and
  • Ineligible, rejected, and/or not already receiving other federal relief supports for the same expenditures.


For Loans Over $40,000 (up to 1M)

Online Application
Toll Free: 1-888-338-9378
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



COVID-19 Impact Virtual Business Session

This virtual business session was held on Thursday, May 7th, 2020, following a survey conducted by Community Futures Nicola Valley, the City of Merritt and the Merritt & District Chamber of Commerce,  to discuss the current impact of COVID-19 in the area.


Copy of Green Inspirational Spring Quote Facebook Post

In recent days we’ve all been consumed with news on the COVID-19 pandemic, and how it’s affecting our health, our families, our small businesses and our communities across the province.

During this time, it is critical that we understand the economic impacts you anticipate in the weeks and months ahead, and how government and related agencies can support the Nicola Valley businesses to ensure they stay viable. As a result, Community Futures Nicola Valley in partnership with the City of Merritt and the Merritt & District Chamber of Commerce conducted the COVID-19 Impact Business Survey to determine how our local business have been affected.

Community Futures has prepared the following summary report for you.

These insights have been shared with the City of Merritt, the Merritt & District Chamber of Commerce and the local business community.

Thanks again for your support and assistance with this important data collection initiative - we greatly appreciate it!