VANCOUVER — The B.C. construction industry wants to buy your crew lunch.
In celebration of the fourth annual Construction and Skilled Trades Month in April, the event’s organizers are offering 100 grants totalling $37,500 to encourage construction employers to treat their crews to a free lunch from a local business.
The event’s sponsors are hoping the grants kick off a chain reaction of lunchtime events on construction sites across the province for April.
The #lunchboxchallenge was first envisioned by Scott Construction last spring. The B.C. Construction Association (BCCA), initiators of Construction Month and platinum sponsors along with LNG Canada, have since joined the effort and made it a significant part of official Construction Month activities.
“Our industry was declared essential throughout the pandemic, and while it’s been a tough year, we’re proud of how well we’ve done and keen to give the workforce a bit of recognition,” says Chris Atchison, BCCA president, in a statement. “We’re grateful that we were able to keep working. The restaurant industry hasn’t been so fortunate, so it’s good do a little something to help the local restaurants who are also working hard in every community.”
During 2020 more than 200 construction companies accepted the challenge. The BCCA is hoping 100 grants ranging from $250 to $500 will usher in a new year of community restaurant support and lunches for workers. Leaders in the restaurant sector have applauded the effort and are doing what they can to support it.
“It’s wonderful to see B.C.’s construction industry go out of its way to support the wider community and reach out to local restaurants that may be struggling to get through the COVID-19 pandemic intact,” said Ian Tostenson, president and CEO of the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association. “It’s a generous idea and we’re thrilled to support it by making posters available to all our members so they can put them up in the window or even visit the construction sites near them and make sure they’re aware of the grants and the #lunchboxchallenge.”
Before the pandemic, 35,000 businesses across the two industries employed nearly 400,000 people and contributed over 10 per cent of the provincial GDP.
To find out more about Construction Month, access the grant applications, and download a #lunchtimechallenge poster, visit www.constructionmonth.ca.
Sponsors of this year’s Construction Month include: The BCCA, the Northern Regional Construction Association, the Southern Interior Construction Association, the Vancouver Island Construction Association, the Vancouver Regional Construction Association, LNG Canada, The BC Construction Safety Alliance, BCIT, Coastal GasLink, GCPay, WorkSafeBC, BC Housing, BC Hydro, the Construction Labour Relations Association, Fortis BC, the Industry Training Authority, BCCA Employee Benefits Trust, BCCWITT, The Builders Code, CGI Constructors, and COCA BC.