The Alberta Government is helping to develop local economies and grow the economic footprint in rural Alberta.

Through their Small Community Opportunity Program, projects that help to promote sustainable and innovative economic growth across the province will be eligible to receive grant funding.

Eligible projects will receive a grant between $20,000 and $100,000 to help cover the project's costs.

"By providing financial backing, our Small Community Opportunity Program grants are empowering Indigenous and small communities to develop their local economies by building capacity in the agriculture and small business sectors. The fact is when these communities succeed, all of Alberta is made stronger," explained Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation R.J. Sigurdson in a media release from Monday, June 10.

The successful projects and communities must meet a set of eligibility requirements.

For instance, the successful projects must align with the Economic Development in Rural Alberta Plan, which works to ensure people living in rural and Indigenous communities have economic opportunities in their communities.

Under the Small Community Opportunity Program, eligible projects include rural business supports and entrepreneurship, support for labour force and skills development, promoting rural tourism, and rural economic development capacity building.

Eligible communities for this program include those that have a population of 20,000 or fewer, those that are are further than 100 km from centres with more than 25,000 residents that could provide employment, must have a significant amount of natural resources and agricultural land, and have a workforce primarily focused on either the oil and gas, agriculture, and forestry industries.

The recipients of these grants will have two years to complete their projects and make a measurable impact in supporting, improving, or enhancing the economic development in the rural and Indigenous communities and the agriculture industry.

To see the full list of eligibility requirements, head over to the Small Community Opportunity Program website.

To read the full Economic Development in Rural Alberta Plan, click here.