Program Overview

Planning and delivery of the Wood First program is a collaborative effort involving the building construction industry, government and the forest sector. Based on recommendations from an advisory group representing a cross-section of primary and secondary manufacturing industries and wood product end-use sectors, FII develops an investment plan that allocates funding on an annual basis.

Activities under the Wood First program are delivered primarily through third-party organizations under a cost-sharing framework between FII, the Federal Government and industry. Initiatives are based on the understanding that long-term sustainability of the forest economy includes actively maintaining, creating and diversifying demand for BC forest products.

Photo: The University of British Columbia’s Centre for Advanced Wood Processing | Credit: Brudder Productions, courtesy

Program Objectives

Through our Wood First program, FII seeks to:


Grow the culture of living and building with wood in BC and beyond.


Maximize the appropriate use of wood in public and private projects.


Strengthen BC’s capacity to produce competitive wood-based products and building systems that create and respond to market demand.


Accelerate adoption of existing and emerging wood-based products and building systems.


Position BC as a world leader in sustainable and innovative wood-based products and building systems in design, production and application.

Funding Process

Each year FII manages a Call for Proposals for the Wood First program, which typically opens in late fall. Though this year’s call is now closed, we invite you to review our process and eligibility information in preparation for next year.


Please review all eligibility requirements below carefully to determine whether your organization may apply for funding.


All applicants are strongly encouraged to carefully review the Wood First Investment Plan and 3-Year Strategic Plan below.


After reviewing our eligibility requirements and applicant resources, please set up a user account within our Recipient Funding Management System below. Once you are registered within our Recipient Funding Management System, you will have access to a variety of information and resources that will help you to submit an application that meets the criteria of FII and our funding partners. Applicants are strongly encouraged to review all resources thoroughly before submitting their applications.


If you have any questions regarding the Call for Proposals process, please email us at


Please review FII’s eligibility information below to determine if you may apply for funding. Please note, FII does not provide loans, grants or subsidies. Funding is not meant to support an individual firm’s activities but rather to benefit sub-sectors or the BC forest sector as a whole.

Those who are eligible to apply for funding under our Wood First program include:

  • Not-for-profit groups or associations representing multi-company interests and serving the objectives of a large geographic area or the majority of producers of a specific species or product category
  • Academic institutions
  • Not-for-profit research institutions
  • First Nations regional Tribal Councils and Indigenous non-profit organizations
  • Government Ministries

Applicant Information

FII provides guidance and support to applicants for its annual Call for Proposals. Though this year’s Call is now closed, if you wish to obtain further resources in preparation for next year, please set up an account within our Recipient Funding Management System and/or review the documents below. Once registered, you will have access to additional information and resources to help you with your application.

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Wood First 3-Year Strategy

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Wood First Investment Plan 2022-23

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Wood First Application Guide


Current Wood First Recipients

At FII, we are proud to support a wide variety of organizations within the forest, design and construction industries. We invite you to browse our 2021/22 Wood First funding recipients.

Featured Projects

Supporting culturally appropriate skills training

B.C.’s construction sector is anticipated to grow significantly in the coming decade, making skills training for young people—the workforce of tomorrow—essential. To meet this need, in 2020/21 the Construction Foundation of BC expanded the Indigenous Skills initiative to grow interest in wood working among young people. Working with First Nations schools to explore culturally rooted wood working projects with educators and youth, the project provided hands-on trades discovery for K-12 classes.
Workshops were undertaken in an online learning environment or delivered in-person when safe to do so. Online delivery started with training teachers to lead their classrooms through different projects primarily using cedar. Indigenous youth used traditional carving tools to learn about B.C. wood products that celebrated West Coast Indigenous practices. Supporting education materials were also developed, including an Indigenous Skills Wood Book, website, and a series of instructional videos.

Photo: Walking online workshop participants through carving a Feast Bowl | Credit: Dean Heron



Passive house training for remote/northern indigenous communities

Kyah Wiget Education Society (KWES) is a certified Independent school that incorporates cultural content into academic programming for K-12 students, as well as within college-level programming in coordination with the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology.
Through a partnership between Passive House Canada and BC Housing, the Witset First Nation received funding for a 26-unit, three-storey energyefficient apartment project that is being designed to meet Passive House standards and will serve as a Passive House showcase. With funding from FII’s Wood First program, the project will also act as a training ground for energy-efficient construction techniques for local Indigenous workers.
Across 2020/21, KWES trained 13 local members of the Witset First Nation, as well as three members of the Heiltsuk First Nation of Haida Gwaii, on lowcarbon building practices such as prefabrication using BC wood products to meet Passive House standards.

New research tool for specifiers

Architecture, engineering and construction firms will now be able to access real estate and construction research and development assets in a simple interactive online resource. This new tool—developed by the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA) with support from FII—will enable researchers to better understand the capabilities, expertise and activities that are happening in research centres across the province.
The VRCA is an industry association that serves institutional, commercial and industrial general contractors, trade contractors, suppliers and consultants—providing advocacy, education and opportunities for engagement to its more than 700 members.


View the tool:

For an overview of our recipient projects completed in 2020/21, please download our Year in Review