VICTORIA -- Like many charities and non-profits trying to stay afloat, the Maritime Museum of BC has struggled during the pandemic due to dwindling attendance and financial difficulties.

Now, the Victoria-based organization is hoping to turn the tide with a new fundraising effort.

The Museum has launched the “Float the Boat” fundraising campaign aimed at raising $25,000 by March 31.

Staff will be marking fundraising milestones by filling a fish tank with water to float a boat higher and higher until they reach their goal.

COVID-19 restrictions forced the museum to close last summer, but it has since reopened with limited hours and limited capacity.

Visits are down 75 per cent over the past year and government support may soon end.

“We’ve been really lucky to be able to receive the government wage subsidies that the federal government has offered,” says Brittany Vis, the associate director for the Maritime Museum of BC.

“But those wage subsidies are set to expire this coming summer so we’ve designed the ‘Float the Boat’ campaign to try and help with that transition, just while COVID restrictions are still in place, and while we’re waiting to get back to regular operations.”

So far, $1,900 has been raised in the first 12 days of the campaign.

As a registered charity and incorporated non-profit, the Maritime Museum of BC runs a variety of public programming and engagement initiatives, all with the goal of promoting and preserving the province’s maritime heritage and culture. In order to keep the programming and exhibit rates accessible to the public, the museum relies on the help of grants and private donations.

The facility also cares for maritime-related collections and provides exhibits for the public to go through at their location at 634 Humboldt St. in downtown Victoria.

In response to the pandemic, the museum launched a range of digital programming for all ages, which can be accessed through its website here

To visit the museum, it is recommended you book in advance as there are limited spots available for walk-ins. Call or email to book an appointment at 250-385-4222 or

To learn more or donate to the Float the Boat campaign, visit the Maritime Museum’s website here