January 2016

In January we started revamping our communications to reflect our community “Why”. Our new mission statement summarizes our why so well. “Connect people. Build community. For good, and forever.

It was exciting to launch our new informative website that engages and inspires you, our friend, to want to learn more about the Foundation in which we provide our friends with the tools and resources to understand how anyone can create a legacy. A huge thank you to Fred Min for sharing his talent with creating our new Community Foundation video. We are honoured with the many friends and donors who shared their story during production.   We continue to receive very positive feedback.

We have also focused on maintaining accountability and building relationships through trust. We are proud that our organization is one of 160 charities that received accreditation from Imagine Canada. We are recognized by our peers and Imagine Canada for having a strong and effective governance and financial structure that builds trust within our organization and across the nation. http://www.imaginecanada.ca/our-programs/standards-program

In May it was a privilege to share the Community Foundations of Canada conference with two board members and our staff team; providing the platform to experience the broader picture of the Community Foundation movement.   This allows for our team to think, plan and aim for higher goals and opportunities in 2016.

We made a significant change to our fundraising event this year to creating Nourish the North, this was an opportunity we took on with confidence and dedication. The success of the event and the community support provides us with the confidence for going forward, yes we learned some things along the way for future planning, but we have a base of a unique event that our community supports and helps to build friends of the Foundation.

Both the West County and Sexsmith Community Foundation’s had successful golf tournaments and ensured the day included fun in support of their regions. Proceeds from both events will continue to support the specific communities forever.

Our Grande Prairie Area’s Vital Sign report provides a clear understanding of our communities’ strengths and challenges. We continue to be asked to share data and details with a variety stakeholders in the area and are invited to numerous tables to explore ways our Foundation can support our community in moving forward with a higher sense of belonging, connectives and security.

Thank you to each member of our community for participating in our annual Random Act of Kindness Day. In partnership with RBC Foundation, we reached into each community throughout northwestern Alberta encouraging everyone to do a little extra for someone else. We also made an ask in support of local youth with donations of heathy snacks and books for children up to  grade 3. Wow, our community stepped up and supported us with dedication and passion to do something great for others and helped to fill the city bus parked at our office for the day.

We continue to hear from our donors, charities and students about how grateful they are for our 2015 Community Impact Grants and Student Awards reception where we brought together our donors and fund folders to meet our local charities, post-secondary students and presented just under $139,000 to our region. The energy and gratitude shared was overwhelming for all. This event is one of the most important pieces of our work in building a stronger community. We are now at the stage of being able to clearly report our impact from the past 19 years of building. Our founders knew there was immense work ahead of them to reach the goal of having the endowment funds at the level to consistently invest back into the community. We are proud of the work being done today and the hard work of our founders.

We have many great opportunities in 2016, I look forward to working with you our community, our donors and our supporters for the benefit of our region. Thank you for your time, commitment and passion to see the Foundation be the best it can be.

 Warmest wishes, Tracey Vavrek, CEO

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Supporting Local Homeless Youth 

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“If you believe, as we do, that the youth of our community are one of our greatest potential assets, you can understand why it is critical that mechanisms be in place to support young people when they find themselves in crisis”.  Statement by the Logan Family

The Grande Prairie Youth Emergency Shelter Society is honored to receive assistance from the Logan Family Fund through the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta in furtherance of their goal: to provide safe temporary emergency shelter to distressed youth from 12 to 17 years of age.

“These funds help enable us to lend a helping hand while connecting homeless youth to programs and services that will support a successful return to their home, or to finding safe, suitable living accommodation. Additionally, at GPYESS we strive to connect our young people with programs and services that will strengthen their coping skills making them more resistant to crisis,” says Tanya Wald, GPYESS Executive Director. “We truly appreciate the kindness and generosity of the funders and donors of the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta.”

Having the opportunity to help youth and their families to develop constructive and positive relationships through referrals to mediation and collaboration with other community services, positions our society to truly influence lives for the better.  Whenever we help another, it makes us all stronger. 

The Logan Family Fund was the first legacy fund established at the Community Foundation in 1997. It is an honour investing the annual grants back into the community that the Logan’s call home.   Dwight Logan has also included a legacy gift in his estate planning by naming the Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta as the owner and beneficiary of a life insurance policy with the funds directed to the Logan Family Fund. 

We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.   – Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882 – 1945)

The Community Foundation of Northwestern Alberta can be named as the beneficiary of your life insurance policy. If you designate our organization as the owner and/or beneficiary of your life insurance policy, we may be able to provide you with an official receipt for income tax purposes for the amount of premium you pay each year.   Contact our office at 1 780 538 2820 or via email. to explore your options in creating your legacy fund.  

When it Matters Most…….Community Impact $’s at work 

Grants 2015 Big number picture for Web

Investing into community. Sometimes it’s easier to see impact when we see the funding dollars connected to the charities we know are in need, and some we did not know were in need.   We have highlighted some of the recipients from this year’s 2015 Community Impact Grant Awards:

Big Brothers Big Sisters Association of Grande Prairie & Area                                                            
Beattie Family Fund      $2,646.60           

High school Mentorship Program is a one-on-one mentoring program that pairs an elementary school student with a high school student for the duration of the school year. The Program which has approximately 30 participants allows the younger students to have a positive older role model, and the older students to develop strong leadership skills through assisting a young student.                           

Camp Tamarack Association                                                                                                                           
Beattie Family Fund     $1,363.40           

To support Camp Tamaracks inclusive, barrier free camping experience for youth and adults of all abilities. Camp Tamarack Provides a safe, and positive environment for people of all ages and abilities to connect with nature, and develop physically, socially, and emotionally. Annually Camp Tamarack has over 2,000 visitors to their camps      

Centre for Creative Arts Society                                                                        
KMSC Law LLP Fund and Ophdal Family Fund      $955.00              

The Healing Arts program creates a healthy more vibrant community by offering art and craft classes to under serviced population allowing students to experience a sense of positive accomplishment and unlock hidden talents. In 2014 HAPI offered over 3,000 classes to more than 1,500 Students ranging in age from 4 to 94.

Cool Aid Society of Grande Prairie – Kick for kids –  for children in need of shoes        

City of Grande Prairie – Parks and Trails                                                                                                 
Underwood Fund        $385.00              

These funds help support a positive connection to nature, community and personal health by assisting with the maintenance and construction of trails throughout our City. In December 2014 there were over 94.5 KM of trails throughout the City         

City of Grande Prairie Pursuit of Excellence Committee – Come Fly With Me Foundation Fund  
Pursuit of Excellence Award     $3,775.00

As a young athlete fund holder Ryan Blais recognized the need for funding for young athletes in our region.   By Supporting the Pursuit of Excellence award the Come Fly with me Foundation Fund is ensuring that young people pursuing excellence in their sport of choice have another option for funding.

Grande Prairie Public School District #2357 Foundation – Jowi Taylor       

Grade Three Reading Academy Society                                                       
Hope Today Tomorrow: The Side/Munroe Family Fund       $380.00             

The Grade 3 Reading program supports young people in reaching their full potential by assisting them with struggles they may be facing in regard to reading at a grade level.      

Grande Prairie & Area Council on Aging                                                                           
Ed Boyce Memorial Fund      $3,050.00          

Seniors outreach is a “One Stop Shop” for seniors requiring assistance. With over 6,000 Active files, Seniors outreach helps seniors with everything from pensions, to home care, to snow removal and Meals on Wheels. Regardless of their need Seniors across Northern Alberta know that Seniors Outreach can provide support, or guidance on any issue they are facing.

Grande Prairie Public School District #2357 Snack Program           
Jeff Toews Memorial Fund         $4,300.00  
Healthy Meals are vital to a child’s ability to learn and thrive in School. The Grande Prairie Public School District Snack programs offers healthy snacks to any student who may show up without something healthy to eat.  

Grande Prairie Public School District #2357 Comp Football Program            
Simpson/Phillips Family Fund         $515.00
Encouraging  young athletes, these monies help grow the COMP football program providing young people the chance to pursue their athletic goals. 

Grande Prairie Public School District #2357 COMP Greenhouse and Compost Environmental Program            
Aquatera Environment Fund, Marcotte family Fund, Fund for Environmental Purposes         $3,810.00     
The Comp Greenhouse and Compost program is an hands on alternative learning program that allows students to learn the importance of food security, composting, and environmental sustainability Through growing and caring for their own food all year round. 

Grande Prairie Regional College Foundation             Pearcy Family Fund         $765.00     
Assisting Students in times of Crisis the Grande Prairie Regional College Foundation Student Emergency Program, offers support to GPRC Students when they need it the most. 

Grande Prairie Women’s Residence Association            
Grande Prairie Auto group Legacy Foundation Fund, Evaskevich Family Fund, GP & Area Association of Realtors         $3,180.00
This year, The Grande Prairie Women’s Residence Association through the support of local community partners and generous donors were able to cut the ribbon on their new long term living facility. In 2014 235 Women and 317 were turned away from the Odyssey House because it was full. These Monies will help support the Public Education program, and continue to support shelter operations for the Odyssey House.

Grande Prairie Youth Emergency Shelter Society            
NorthernSPIRIT Foundation, GP Auto group,          $2,255.00
With over 188 Youth shelter stays in 2014, the Steps to Success Program offers those utilizing the shelter to build confidence and life skills to help them be successful in all aspects of their life. The program offers youth a chance to learn the importance of budgeting for daily needs, preparing healthy meals, and partnering with Community resources who can help them on their journey to success. 

Town of Spirit River            
Woronuk Legacy Fund         $620.00     
The Town of Spirit River Drop in Sports program helps youth in the spirit river area engage in healthy lifestyles by providing them with free access to physical activities. By providing youth with the chance to engage in sports, the Drop in sports program is creating healthy youth who feel more connected to their peers and their community.
Society for Support to Pregnant and Parenting Teens            
The Grande Prairie Keg Steakhouse and Bat Supporting Young persons and families with cancer Society   $595.00     
Serving 3-7 Young couples at a time the Baby Basics Program teaches young parents and their families how to care for both themselves and their new baby. Focusing on topics such as feeding, sleeping, and how to care for themselves post baby, the program provides young parents with the confidence to be the best they can be.    
Suicide Prevention Resource Centre            
Hannah Ouellette Memorial Fund         $1,180.00     
The Suicide Prevention breakfast program is a 4-5 week program focused on assisting youth aged 9-17 who are struggling with stress, conflict, self esteem issues, and engaging in risky behaviours. The program offers youth a safe place to learn about their feelings and healthy ways to cope with them.    
Woronuk Legacy Fund         $1,200.00     
Supporting youth in need in the Rycroft area have the opportunity to patriciate in sports.
Young Persons And Families With Cancer Society Of Northern Alberta –
The Grande Prairie Keg Steakhouse and Bar Supporting Young persons and families with cancer Society         $735.00     
The Young Persons and Families with Cancer Society offers support to families and children experiencing cancer by connecting them with resources and others experiencing the same      


The following COMMUNITY IMPACT FUNDS are pooled to address emerging and pressing needs of the community both now, and in the future.

Ainsworth Community Fund
BP Canada Energy Company Fund  
Canadian Tire Grande Prairie Community Fund
Cardon Homes Fund
Clyde and Mary Blackburn Family Fund
Community Impact Endowment Fund
Fletcher Mudryk & Co. LLP CA’s Fund
Grande Prairie River Rats Association Fund
Kevin and Karen Willsey Family Fund
McLevin Family Fund
Merv & Dawn Marie Crouse Family Fund
Pete and Lori Merlo Family Fund – Pete and Lori
Ric’s Grill Grande Prairie Community Fund
Rotary Club of Grande Prairie Memorial Fund
Sheehan Flint Family Fund
Vincent and Tracey Vavrek Family Fund

Grande Prairie & District Golden Age Centre                                                                                           
Community Impact Funds       $1,280.00           

Offering a wide variety of programs and activities aimed at Seniors including quilting, arts and crafts, cribbage and indoor curling the Grande Prairie & District Golden Age centre is a Hub for local seniors to gather, connect and build friendships

Grande Prairie And District Grief Support Association                                                                             
Community Impact Funds      $5,000.00          

Originally Developed to support children in Grande Cache during the mine closures the Circle of Life program has since expanded to help school aged children experiencing significant change or loss in their lives throughout the Peace region. Through creating understanding and teaching children they are not alone, the program assisted over 150 students in 6 schools last year.           

Grande Prairie Friendship Center                                                                                                             
Community Impact Funds     $1,100.00        

From April 1 2014 to March 31 2015 the Grande Prairie Friendship Centre’s served 17,351 individuals through their one window resource program, This include serving over 7,195 hot meals to those in need.                   

Grande Prairie Public School District #2357 Snack Program                     
Community Impact & Jeff Toews Memorial Foundation Fund     $930.00      

Healthy Meals are vital to a child’s ability to learn and thrive in School. The Grande Prairie Public School District Snack programs offers healthy snacks to any student who may show up without something healthy to eat.            

Grande Prairie Youth Emergency Shelter Society                                
NorthernSPIRIT Foundation, Grande Prarie Auto Group, Community Impact      $3,155.00  

With over 188 Youth shelter stays in 2014, the Steps to Success Program offers those utilizing the shelter to build confidence and life skills to help them be successful in all aspects of their life. The program offers youth a chance to learn the importance of budgeting for daily needs, preparing healthy meals, and partnering with Community resources who can help them on their journey to success.

High Prairie Native Friendship Centre Society                                                                                                     
Community Impact Funds       $3,000.00    

The High Prairie Native Friendship Centre Police Cadet program Aims to help youth in High Prairie develop a sense of belonging, pride, and a healthy relationship with law enforcement. The Program teaches youth to be accountable for their actions, encourages a healthy lifestyle, and builds friendships and a sense of community. The program is available to any youth in high prairie area   

HIV North    
Community Impact Funds      $2,000.00               

The women’s drop in program is a 12 week program aiming to support women involved in, or at risk of entering the sex trade. The Program provides a safe and supportive environment where women can access community supports, warm meals and clothes, and build self esteem to help them escape their current lifestyle. From April to September the Drop in program assisted 80 unique individuals who visited the program a total of 513 times.

MD of Spirit River   
Community Impact Funds      $2,000.00  

The Soupier Seniors Soup Kitchen in Spirit River is a community driven project involving team work and community building to help support those in need. Community members aged 65-95gather to work together to create healthy meals to distribute to those in need in the Spirit River Area. The Program also connects the younger generation with seniors to learn home cooked traditional meals, creating a community hub that connects generations.                           

Society for Support to Pregnant and Parenting Teens                                                                                               
Community Impact Funds     $405.00

Serving 3-7 Young couples at a time the Baby Basics Program teaches young parents and their families how to care for both themselves and their new baby. Focusing on topics such as feeding, sleeping, and how to care for themselves post baby, the program provides young parents with the confidence to be the best they can be.                     

Suicide Prevention Resource Centre                                                                                                                           
Community Impact Funds     $3,760.00     

The Suicide Prevention breakfast program is a 4-5 week program focused on assisting youth aged 9-17 who are struggling with stress, conflict, self esteem issues, and engaging in risky behaviours. The program offers youth a safe place to learn about their feelings and healthy ways to cope with them.                             

The Cool Aid Society of Grande Prairie                                                                                                                         
Community Impact Funds     $5,000.00       

With over 1,636 individual youth visits a total of 11,652 times in 2014-2015 the furniture at the Cool-Aid Society is well used and well loved. These monies will assist the Cool-Aid society with the purchase of new furniture to support all of their visitors

The John Howard Society of Grande Prairie                                                                   
Community Impact Funds        $4,000.00          

The Boys Club Program offers young at risk men the chance to gather together and learn through positive mentorship. Focused on creating healthy young engaged citizens the Boys club program teaches everything from how to deal with feelings, to how to deal with stereotypes facing young men. The Program serves approximately 12 young men a year through their intensive boys club program               

Town of Beaverlodge Food Bank                                                                                                                          
West County Community Funds      $370.00            

Alberta has seen a 30% rise in food bank usage in the last year, We know that with high levels of families experiencing food insecurity, this is a much needed program throughout our communities.

Town of Sexsmith – Library 123 you and me Program                                                              
Sexsmith Elks Fund and Sexsmith Legion Fund     $1,170.00

The 123 You and Me Program allows parents the opportunity to connect and bond with their children aged 6 and under through reading, snacks, crafts and more.         

Town of Sexsmith Food Bank                                                                                                                     
Sexsmith Community Foundation Fund     $1,130.00               

In Alberta 40% of lone parent families will experience food insecurity, this means that at some point during the year a large majority of families will not be able to afford food at some point during the year. The Food bank provides these families with a sense of security in uncertain times.                     

At our December 9, 2015 grants reception just under $139,000 in grants was given out  to our charitable community and to local students.This is 20% more than 2014, and brings our investment back into the community to over $4.38 million.  Each and every year we will see this amount grow, as our community savings account grows, as will our investment back into our region.  

 Pomeroy Lodging . . .Fiercely Engaged in Community

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The  Community Foundation would like to thank community partner, Pomeroy Lodging, for their continued support of our work in the community as our Vital Impact Sponsor for the Smart & Caring Leaders Campaign 2016.   It is their dedication that ensures our work positively impacts our community.    Kim Gravengard, Director of Community Relations at Pomerly Lodging states — “We are especially proud of our involvement with the Smart & Caring Leaders program as it assists in the day-to-day operations of the organization, and without support of this type, the organization would not exist as we know it today. I encourage organizations to get involved whether be through Sponsorship, Gifts, Endowments, attending an event or through support of the Smart & Caring Leaders program, which in turn strengthens and grows the organization”.

“The pursuit of excellence takes commitment, passion, and relentless drive. You must put your heart and energy into working toward your target. This investment can’t be fabricated, and must be nurtured. To achieve greatness, you must strive, push, exceed expectations, and drive to be the best.

This pursuit isn’t for everyone. It takes dedication, ambition, and an honest, all-in approach to everything one undertakes. At Pomeroy Lodging, this is the standard we hold ourselves to. Family founder, Ralph Pomeroy, purchased a hotel in 1941 in Fort St John B.C. The Pomeroy Hotel was a place where guests could find all the comforts of home with unsurpassed quality, and it became the cornerstone of where the business is today. Ralph’s nephew Bob Pomeroy, who also had a passion for business, inspired and changed the landscape of hospitality in the Peace Region of British Columbia for over 25 years. The family legacy continues with the third generation, Ryan Pomeroy, who is bringing innovative and leading-edge hospitality to Western Canada.

To be Pomeroy Lodging means to be premium. To ensure we deliver greatness, we set extremely high standards and surround ourselves with an impassioned team that has the drive to deliver. We come to the table with our reputation in hand, ready to invest in and serve our community.

Our investment goes well beyond the walls of our hotels and the land we build on. We are here to make our people— along with our partners, our clients, and our communities—strong, successful, and sustainable.

Further, we stand up and invest our time and energy into our communities. The markets we build and operate in are the communities we were born and raised in. We understand the people, because they’re our people, and we’re motivated to make our communities stronger because we know the crucial role they play. The communities in which Pomeroy Lodging operates are not just business locations, they are home, they are the communities they were born and raised in.

With over 3 million dollars invested annually into cities and towns across Alberta and BC we are honoured to partner with Pomeroy Lodging as our Vital Impact Sponsor for our Smart & Caring Leaders Program.

For Pomeroy Lodging it comes down to our Core Values: Honesty, Quality, Industry, Winning and Family. The Family Core Value: “A balanced person is a motivated person, and we believe our familial foundation nurtures our relationships with all stakeholders. Relationships are rooted in trust, honesty, respect, and gratitude. One member’s success is the success of all in our family. Regardless of the roles we play, we will support each other in building the confidence and strength necessary to succeed,” statement from the Pomeroy Lodging Team.

Pomeroy Lodging IS the definition of a Smart and Caring leader, taking pride in their properties, their people, and the communities in which they operate. 

If you would ike to know more about our Smart & Caring Leaders Program, please contact Heather at 1 780 538 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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