Your Community Matters – October 2020

With Thanksgiving just in the review mirror, and a few weeks of the most beautiful fall weather, I am reflective and grateful!  No two days at the Community Foundation have been the same, in fact some days we were in crisis mode!  For a new CEO, I can honestly share that even though the days are full, I consider myself incredibly fortunate to be able to work on some impactful initiatives, stretch my comfort zone, and learn new ways to be better!

Back in April, crisis was everywhere, but most immediately for me was how do I navigate a Zoom meeting?!  Maybe you can relate?  Now, I have several online meetings each day and it has become mostly comfortable.  Aside from the odd entertaining blooper and predictable technical issue, we have actually managed to connect, share information, and learn from people which would not have been possible pre-pandemic.  We attended a conference in Florida virtually, made presentations to supporters from other cities, joined learning cohorts from across the country, and even strengthened our “Teams” dynamic within our office.  

Crisis has paved the way for new relationships!  We have forged a partnership with the Nitehawk Year Round Adventure Park, helping to support them after a devastating landslide back in May.  We have formed the Nitehawk Landslide Recovery Fund to provide donors an opportunity to receive tax receipts while propping up this important outdoor recreation facility during it’s time of need.  Our Community Foundation is able to offer supporters a quick and easy way to make a donation, receive a receipt, and manage the funds until Nitehawk is ready to reinstate a ski lift.  We urge you to rally behind them too!

Crisis has provided resources!  We have also received our second allocation of $229,110 in the Government of Canada’s Emergency Community Support Fund (ESCF). With our portal open for applications October 5th – 30th, this round of funding is still intended to support vulnerable populations across our region.  We look forward to working alongside community groups from every corner of our area to ensure they are aware of the support available.  These connections we are making are invaluable for us to gain understanding about all communities in our region.  The trusting relationships we are building are important and the admiration and respect we have for their work is key to us serving them well.

Crisis has connected us!  Our team will reach out to many great corporate supporters again this month, as it’s that time of year where we humbly seek provisions for our efforts through the Smart & Caring Leaders Program.  We are proud of the opportunities for business to partner with our Community Foundation to help position them as community leaders while giving a nod to our important work.

Crisis brings focus!  We have to look at meeting immediate needs, no doubt!  But we are also spending our time planning how we can build back better, and focusing on the long view.   This may be the greatest confluence of crisis of our lifetimes, with economic, medical and cultural issues at the forefront of our minds.  We really have an opportunity to change, analyze, and move the needle on issues that are even more apparent now! 

And finally, crisis boosts fortitude!  The Community Foundation is with you, here to support, encourage, guide, and listen!  We are honored to be a resource and continue planning for community greatness as we move forward!  I look forward to working with all of you to see the many opportunities and collaborate for good!


Laura LaValley, CEO

Emergency Community Support Funding – Round 2

The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unpredictable and challenging time for many, with some communities experiencing higher levels of vulnerability than others. Marginalized groups, youth, children and the elderly, essential workers, and newcomers are just some of the communities that have faced increased challenges. To provide emergency relief, the Government of Canada launched the Emergency Community Support Fund (ECSF) to help support communities made increasingly vulnerable by the pandemic. 

For more information and to find out how to apply visit –

Nitehawk Landslide Recovery Fund

The Grande Prairie Ski Club (operating as Nitehawk) has been providing recreation opportunities in the Peace Region for the past 60 years. In that time, Nitehawk Year-Round Adventure Park has grown to offer engaging outdoor activities during all four seasons. This spring we suffered a devastating natural disaster on our Hill. On May 19th, 2020 there was a large landslide which has affected ….. read the rest of their story here –

Open Door Cafe

What is Open Door Cafe? –


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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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