APRIL 2016

Ours is a group of people who partner together to move our craft with a common purpose..  Each member has a desire and commitment to be part of the team.  Each also has a responsibility and is committed to support one another to reach our destination with energy, passion and dedication. Now imagine if one of the rowers decided to take a break or row in a different direction, where does this craft end up?  Do we get to our desired destination? Or, are we just going around in circles? 

The strength of our community rowers is evident in our community volunteers – the dedication and commitment of the many.  We see their passion as they are volunteering or donating for a specific project or cause.  At the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta we have a team of rowers who are building upon the great work of our past. 

I am excited to announce the appointment of Amanda Reimer, as our 2016 Chair of the Board.  Amanda, leader of our crew stepped into the Chair’s position at our recent AGM bringing with her passion and true understanding of partner – SHIP.  Supported by strong ethics and values that will ensure that our team is rowing together as others have done before us.  She is setting the platform for future – the next generation of volunteers, community members, and leaders.

I appreciate how communities flourish due to the many rowing together toward a specific destination.  I see our Community Foundation growing stronger and with its purpose of strengthening our region and building financial resources for future generations.  We continue to partner with our friends, donors and community in ensuring our ship is moving forward with control, grace, and vision.  Thank you for being part of our team; you are a valued partner.

Please feel free to contact me at 780-538-2820 or by replying to this e-mail to discuss how you can partner with the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta and how you can impact and inspire others in your community.Connect people. Build community. For good, and forever.

 Warmest wishes, Tracey Vavrek, CEO

tracey web

2015 Annual report 

Annual Report Cover

Have a look at our 2015 Annual Report available online now.



Community Foundation Welcomes new Chair of the Board 

Amanda Reimer Chair of Board 2016

At the April 6, 2016 Annual General Meeting the Community Foundation was honoured to welcome Amanda Reimer as our 2016 board chair. We also welcomed new members to the Board;  Helen Neufeld, Danny Noskey and Steve Harvard.  We are honored to work with you all . . . . All for Community.

Meet our Board Chair Amanda:  Born in Sale, Great Manchester, England Amanda and her family immigrated to Canada when she was six years old. After multiple moves Amanda settled in Grande Prairie in 1988.Since arriving in the Peace Region Amanda has become an integral part of the community. She has worked in the legal professional and is the sole owner of PDQ Process Services Inc., a legal support and document delivery business.In 2008, she joined Swan City Rotary Club and this year will celebrate eight year’s perfect attendance.

Through engagement with fellow Rotarians, she got involved with the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta and has been a proud member of the Board since April, 2012. She has chaired the Governance Committee since September, 2012, and have participated in a number of other committees and events.As a strong advocate for lifelong education and professional development Amanda believes in raising up fellow men and women and empowering them to be the best they can be.

She understands how challenging life can be and values the Foundation for its ability to reach all segments of community.Amanda was instrumental in the creation of the Spirit of the Peace Entrepreneurial Women’s Fund, a legacy fund with the Community Foundation. After taking a professional development program and meeting some incredible like-minded women, Amanda teamed up with this great group with a goal to support other entrepreneurial women in the Peace Region. The Spirit of the Peace Entrepreneurial Women’s fund, is a legacy fund that will focus on projects and activities that empower women today and for future generations.“I am so proud of what the Community Foundation has achieved over the last 20 years and look forward to the opportunities that come with the role of Chair.

The Foundation board is built of skilled, dedicated members, and I am honoured to work with these passionate volunteers,” says Amanda. “Grande Prairie is a very young community and the youth are our future; we must connect and engage! We must lead the way and mentor these shining stars focusing on the importance of community and the importance of giving back.”To Amanda and her family, Grande Prairie is truly home. Grande Prairie has taught her what community is and why it is so important. It has given her a sense of belonging and strengthened her resolve to be connected to and engaged with a diverse population. We are honoured to have Amanda as part of the Community Foundation Team.

Creating a legacy fund is easy.  For more information about legacy building and how – visit our website or contact our office at 1 780 538 2820.


Moving Past Grief – Camp Heal-A-Heart

Camp Heal A Heart pic

For many arriving at Camp Heal-A Heart the experience can be bittersweet. While many of the young people are filled with the joy and excitement that comes with staying at an over-night summer camp, for these youth there is another component to their stay.

Those attending Camp Heal-A-Heart are there for a reason. All of these youth have had a significant loss in their life due to death, divorce, or not living with their biological families. Camp Heal-a-Heart is designed to be both recreational and therapeutic. The program is designed to teach these youth that they are not alone in their grief journey.

Through hands on activities like mask making the children are able to learn about feelings, and how to cope with their lives when inside they are hurting. Each year the camp sees over 75 youth attending their overnight and day camps. While attending the camps the youth come together to play games, make friends, and learn to deal with their own personal grief.

Yearly, the staff of Grande Prairie and District Grief Support get to see children overcoming adverse situations grow and prosper. Daily they hear stories of success from families, social workers, and friends about how they are changing lives.

Each child’s story is unique, and each child has a lasting impact on the camp instructors and support workers, but there is one child in particular who stands out in the memories of camp instructors.

A youth who experienced deep loss in his life had been attending the camp. After completing the program and finding his own personal peace the youth came back to volunteer for the program and help other kids experiencing personal loss. Today, that young man has a full time job and yet every summer he takes his personal summer holidays and comes back to work at the camp. When the staff ask why he continues to return, his answer was simple. “Because camp saved my life.”

Grande Prairie & District Grief support’s operation of Camp Heal-a-Heart is a vital part of our community. We are honoured to partner with Grande Prairie & District Grief Support through our community impact grant program to assist them in providing this vital programming to youth in need.

For more information on Community Impact Grants and how you can make a difference, please email or call 1 780 538 2820



Building a Corporate Legacy

GP Auto Group My Community Is

Wes Kaban prides himself on being community minded.

Since he first purchased Mercan Motor’s & Subaru North in 1998 Wes has focused on building his brand to reflect his strong held beliefs about honesty, ethics and professionalism. Over the last 18 years The Grande Prairie Auto group has becoming a booming business in our region, Wes believes part of that success is due to the empowerment of his staff to drive the business and community forward.

To Wes, being part of community means being part of something greater than himself. It is about sharing and growing and enriching the lives of others around you. Giving back to the community that has allowed his business to thrive is important to him and his team of 215 employees.

To the Grande Prairie Auto group family giving back to community is part of their organizations culture, and according to Wes, it is an honour to do so.

Since 2010 Wes and the Grande Prairie Auto Group Team have been supporting various projects throughout the community through the Grande Prairie Auto Group Legacy Foundation Fund, a legacy fund held at the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta.

“We chose to set up a fund with the Community Foundation for a few reasons. What attracted me most was the longevity and sustainability of the legacy fund, it wasn’t just a one-time donation,” says Wes. “I appreciate the flexibility of the fund as we can mutually decide on the charitable cause we would like to assist each year. I was also impressed with the amount of funds that went directly to the organizations with limited administration costs.”“It is an honour to work with Wes and his team with the creation of this corporate fund in meeting their philanthropic efforts. The impact of this fund is felt throughout the region as it has the flexibility to reach into the community, positively impacting the Grande Prairie Auto Group clients, staff and many who he may never meet, “said Tracey.

In 2015 the Grande Prairie Auto Group Legacy Foundation Fund was able to offer support to both the Grande Prairie Youth Emergency Shelter Society and the Grande Prairie Women’s Residence Association. The legacy created by Wes and his team is something that will continue to make a difference in the lives of numerous people throughout our region for generations to come.Interested in learning how you can create a corporate legacy fund in support of the community that means so much to you?   Email Heather or call our office at 1 780 538 282


My Community Foundation Is . . .  Thankful

BOD My Community Is

At the Community Foundation we see many Thank you’s and letters of support from donors and their families.   We hope that by sharing these small notes of thanks from our community it is another way we can show the impact that kind words, actions or support all have a ripple effect creating a closer and stronger community where all belong.

My Community is . . . Connected, engaged and leading the way for future generations.  – Amanda Reimer (Board Chair)

My Community is . . .Working for a Better Future  – Steven Hinkley (Vice-Chair)

My Community is . . . Positioned to Thrive! – Devon Wardley (Treasurer)

Your Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta is community inspired. We listen to our donors and community, and help connect people like you with local and regional organizations and causes that you care about.  We want to hear from you and welcome your comments and inspired stories.


Building Community Starts with a Single Stroke

Giving Guide Cover JPEG

What are you passionate about?  Art, helping children, availability of recreational activities?  What issues come up at your dinner table?  Youth, homelessness, healthcare?  Where would you like to see improvements and enhancements?  The Community Foundation connects you with the projects, programs and organizations that matter to you.  

When you become a donor of the Community Foundation, hyou have the flexibility to shape your own charitable giving to reflect your personal goals and desires.  Whether you want to address an urgent need in the community, support the memory of a loved one, or help out a charity with a project, we have a giving option to help you make an impact and improve the lives of others in the region. 

For more information on how you can make a difference in your community please visit our website Creating a Legacy page or contact us at the office 780.538 2820.







2023 Vital
Impact Leaders

Thank You!

We are very proud of the continued relationships with the following community leaders. Partnerships with organizations that are dedicated to giving back to their local community ensure that your Northwestern Alberta Foundation can continue to build community. Please support those who support us!

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