The first North American Chamber of Commerce was created in 1750 in Halifax, and local Chambers across the country began formation in the early 20th century. But, despite its long history in our communities, few know its benefits.
The Campbell River & District Chamber of Commerce was created in 1932 to give local businesses a voice on the municipal, provincial and federal stages.
The Chamber is the common ground between businesses, all four levels of government, education institutions, community organizations, the greater community and the Indigenous Nations — providing opportunities for engagement and learning from experts and each other.
“We are the voice of businesses,” says Mary Ruth Snyder, Executive Director of The Campbell River & District Chamber of Commerce. “We give businesses a seat at the table.”
That table could include local organizations, committees, and policy-making discussions with all levels of government.
The Campbell River Chamber is one of 125 Chambers belonging to the BC Chamber network, representing more than 36,000 businesses. More than 450 Chambers are represented at the National level, representing more than 200,000 businesses nationwide. The Canadian Chamber is Canada’s largest and most influential business association. It provides the primary and vital connection between business and the federal government.
In February of this year, the federal government announced an investment of $2.8 million to establish the Business Data Lab (BDL), a partnership between the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and Statistics Canada. The BDL will provide future-focused, timely business indicators crucial to helping governments, business associations and entrepreneurs from all regions of Canada identify future growth opportunities for Canadian businesses.
“As the pace of change accelerates and competition grows, Canada’s businesses need solid, timely data to help them adapt quickly to marketplace changes. The Canadian Chamber’s Business Data Lab will provide data tools to help Canadian businesses successfully emerge from the pandemic and create sustainable, inclusive economic growth,” says Perrin Beatty, President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
Local Chambers have an impact on how business is conducted and how policy is formed. This impact is felt in communities and across the country.
“The day after the Prime Minister announced the original Candian Emergency Wage Subsidy at the beginning of the pandemic, we heard immediately at the local level that 10 per cent was not enough,” says Snyder. “Days later it was raised to 75 per cent. We voiced our concerns, and we were heard. Collectively, our voice matters.”
The Campbell River & District Chamber regularly works with their counterparts across the country and the province to develop policy. Given the depth and breadth of the chamber network, the policies created help guide both the federal and provincial governments as they draft legislation and policy. Once passed at their perspective AGMs, these policies are shared with the Prime Minister, Federal Ministers, the Premier, and the Provincial Ministers.
The benefit of membership in the Campbell River & District Chamber is not only about influencing policy. More than 30 cost-saving benefits are open to members, including health benefits, gas, and shipping discounts. For a complete list and details visit,https://campbellriverchamber.ca/membership-details/.
You can also follow the Campbell River & District Chamber on their social media channels: