Medicine Hat Media

Local Charities Will Once Again Benefit From Community Foundation Grants

In an effort to continue its community leadership and bolster local charitable organizations, the Community Foundation of Medicine Hat and Southeastern Alberta announced today that it will resume its community grant giving for the fall 2009 cycle in limited amounts.

Applications will be accepted from today until the close of business on September 15, 2009. Qualified donees or organizations must hold a charitable registration number from the Canada Revenue Agency. The Community Foundation awards grants for charitable activities in the arts, education, social services, the environment, health, culture and recreation, or any project that will maintain or improve the quality of life in Southeastern Alberta.

The Community Foundation temporarily suspended its granting process in fall 2008 after the initial downturn of the economy. Because the foundation awards grants based on the earnings of its investment portfolio, it was unable to fund the last two biannual grant cycles. The Foundation has continued to fund its biannual designated grants, which include various scholarships.

“It was a difficult decision to make and we hated letting the community down, especially during hard times,” said Community Foundation executive director Mike Christie. “But it makes us all the happier to announce new grants this year.”

Christie said that while the Community Foundation’s financial portfolio is only slowly recovering, there are glimmers of hope that enable the granting process to be reinstated.

“While there are signs of life, there is still a very long road to full recovery,” he said. “But we have stuck to a risk adverse, conservative and balanced investment portfolio along the way. This cautious approach has allowed us to free up some of our limited resources for grant making during the coming year.”

The grants committee of the Community Foundation will review the fall grant applications and notify recipients in November 2009. Christie stated that the grants will not be as large as in years past, but still substantial enough to help community groups.

“Historically our grants have assisted non-profit organizations in meaningful activities such as programs for the disabled, assistance to those in crisis and even summer camps,” he said. “We hope that this group of grants will make just as many significant enhancements to our lives in Southeastern Alberta.”

To assist in the grant application process, the Community Foundation will host a “Grant Application Workshop” for all interested parties on Wednesday, July 29 from 12 – 1:30 PM. The workshop will be held at the Volunteer and Community Information Centre at 211 4th St SE. Coffee will be provided and attendees are welcome to bring their lunch.

Because the Community Foundation of Medicine Hat and Southeastern Alberta has such a large service area, groups located from Wildhorse to Bassano to Consort, Alberta are welcome to apply for funds. For more information on eligibility or to receive an application, groups may visit or call the Community Foundation office at (403) 527-9038.

About community foundations

Community foundations build and manage permanent endowments to support local priorities. They use their deep knowledge of community needs to connect donors to the causes and organizations that matter most to them. With more than $2.9 billion in assets, the community foundation movement is one of Canada’s largest grantmakers, providing more than $176 million in grants last year to thousands of charities.

The Community Foundation of Medicine Hat and Southeastern Alberta has assets of $6 million and over the course of its 17-year history has made over 500 grants for a combined total exceeding $2.5 million.

For more information, please contact Mike Christie at (403) 527-9038.

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