The fundraising campaign to help purchase land around Cottonwood Lake Park outside of Nelson has hit over $25,000 in just two weeks. The Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society is behind the initiative as the private lands are slated for logging. Andrew McBurney also organized a community meeting a few weeks ago which saw hundreds attend.

He says there are grants available to help with exactly this type of project. They’re trying to raise $50,000 in the coming weeks and get an application together.

“There’s a federal grant available, a very large federal grant, the deadline for which is January 16 for initial submissions and so that puts a special imperative on what we’re trying to do here.”

As of January 3, 240 people had already donated almost $26,000 in just 14 days. He adds another part of the goal is to put pressure on local governments.

“We’re saying to the powers that be ‘hey, this really matters and if you misread the tone of the community make no mistake and take a look at this, this is a really big deal’ and we hope that everybody gets back to the negotiating table.”

The Regional District Of Central Kootenay says they have been negotiating with the private land owner; however, most of those discussions happen in camera and details aren’t released to the public.

Click here to learn more or donate.