Thursday, May 28, 2015

Community Foundation awards 38 grants across southwestern Alberta

  • Pincher Creek are recipients include Pincher Creek Humane Society, Allied Arts Council of Pincher Creek, Village of Hill Spring, Pincher Creek Community Hall
Community Foundation of Lethbridge and Southwestern Alberta

The Community Foundation knows that at the heart of every community project, there are local people working hard to make a difference. This is why the Foundation was thrilled to grant over $337,000 at a celebration on May 28, including a significant grant from a field of interest fund that will go towards the rebuild of the Rainbow Riding Arena at Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association (LTRA).

These grants are provided through the Community Priorities Fund. Many donors have given together to create this fund that meets the current needs of our communities.

“The Community Foundation has been giving out grants throughout southwestern Alberta for 48 years,” explained Dennis Hatt, Community Foundation President. “We couldn’t do this without the generosity of our donors.”

Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association received an $80,000 grant from the Ida and Elmer Weins Fund for Children with Disabilities, as well as a $10,000 Community Priorities grant. Community Foundation Board Director Dianne King and her husband Dennis, who knew Ida and Elmer Wiens, spoke about how committed the couple were to giving back to the Coaldale community.

“Elmer and Ida would have been humbled but delighted to know that their bequest to the Community Foundation will enhance the new LTRA arena,” said Dianne King. “They wanted their funds to be used for therapeutic resources for children with disabilities that were not available for their disabled son.”

Much of the southwestern Alberta region was also represented at the event, including Coutts, Wrentham, Claresholm, Pincher Creek, Cardston, Coaldale, Lomond, Hill Spring, Stavely, Picture Butte, Taber, Coleman and Vulcan. Special presentations from Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association and singing performance by the Carriage House Theatre in Cardston were well received by everyone in attendance. Both presenters spoke about how the grants were going to enhance their organizations.

“The grants are a great start to our fundraising goals,” said Rick Austin, Executive Director of Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association. “Without them we would not be able to move forward with the arena rebuild.”


Each month Lethbridge Interfaith Food Bank distributes grocery items to 1,300-1,500 people and a grant of $7,500 will be used to purchase shelving units, worktables and utility carts used in the processing and distribution of food hampers.

Theatrical productions will flow more efficiently with a new lighting board purchased with an $8,000 grant to the Carriage House Theatre in Cardston.

The Town of Granum Recreation Building will be able to cope with heavy spring rainfalls with the help of a $2,500 grant that will be used to install new eavestroughs and downspouts.

Therapy sessions have not been able to continue at Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association since the devastating roof collapse in November 2014 and a grant of $10,000 will help rebuild the Rainbow Riding Arena.

The Canyon Church Camp Association will upgrade the camp kitchen in Waterton with a grant of $9,900 to purchase new cabinets, countertops and a sink to bring the kitchen up to current health and safety standards.

Controlling disease in cats that are rescued will be better managed by the Pincher Creek Humane Society with a grant of $5,000 for two new stainless steel cages for cat isolation.

The activities of the Claresholm Senior Citizens Drop - In Centre are thriving and a grant of $5,000 will furnish a new multipurpose room that will be used for crafts and other activities.

The Alberta Birds of Prey Foundation will use a grant of $10,000 to install a new paving stone stairway for safe and convenient public entry to the Natural History Centre in Coaldale.

To promote physical activity at the Cardston Elementary School a grant of $5,000 will provide track and field equipment such as hurdles and mats for children in grades 1 to 5.

The Allied Arts Council of Pincher Creek will use a grant of $1,500 for materials needed to upgrade the bathrooms in the historic Lebel Mansion in Pincher Creek.

The Family Centre of Southern Alberta will use a grant of $3,000 to update its library with children’s books on Blackfoot Culture and counselling resource books for staff and parents.

The Village of Lomond will use a $10,000 grant to relocate the washrooms in the Community Centre to a location with greater accessibility.

Volunteers have worked tirelessly to update recreation facilities and a grant of $10,000 to the Village of Hill Spring will complete the new kitchen.

The Pincher Creek Community Hall will be using a grant of $7,000 to replace old and worn out carpet throughout the main area of the building.

Transporting supplies to young campers in isolated areas will be easier with an ATV trailer purchased with a grant of $3,000 to the Wilderness Ranch of Claresholm.

With a grant of $5,000 the Town of Stavely will be able to upgrade the furnace in the Youth Hall which will help increase the comfort and use of people of all ages attending programs.

The welcoming environment for people with mental challenges will be improved with a $6,000 grant for new flooring to the 100 year old facility operated by the Prairie Winds Clubhouse Society in Claresholm.

Outdoor free libraries offer a fun neighbourhood gathering space for residents to take, leave and share books with neighbours and a $3,000 grant to the City of Lethbridge Community and Social Development Group will provide 12 little free library stations throughout the city.

A new games room at the Coleman Seniors Drop - In Centre will be completed with a $5,000 grant to the municipality of Crowsnest Pass.

The building owned by Big Brothers and Big Sisters in Lethbridge will be improved with a $10,000 grant to renovate the basement in the 100 year old building.

Holy Spirit School Division will use a $3,000 grant to purchase new computers and Ipad’s for the Graduation Coach classroom at Catholic Central High School that focuses on helping FNMI (First Nations, Metis, and Inuit) students with academic support before, during, and after school.

With a $7,500 grant to the Town of Picture Butte the Walk on the Wild Side Society will be able to complete the installation of a new metal gazebo located on the shore of the reservoir that borders the town.

The struggle to overcome addictions is daunting and a grant of $11,750 to the South Country Treatment Centre in the County of Lethbridge will improve services with replacement of 23 beds.

Fleetwood - Bawden School in Lethbridge plans to use a $10,000 grant for a new sensory room in the school that offers a safe place for students with behavioural and sensory issues to decompress in a creative and calming environment.

Community access to the high speed library network will be improved at the Wrentham Public Library with a grant of $1,880 for two public use computers.

Using a $10,000 grant, the Taber Mennonite School will be able to furnish and purchase books for a new library and reading intervention room. The funds will be used to purchase culturally sensitive, low-vocabulary books for German speaking students learning English.

Accessibility to community programs being held at the historic Coutts School will be improved with a grant of $5,000 to the Village of Coutts for a new lift and door.

The Claresholm and District Transportation Society will be able to expand rural transportation for people travelling to medical appointments for Vulcan area residents with a $15,000 grant to purchase a new van.

Lethbridge Family Services will be able to enhance services to clients with a grant of $5,000 for new physiotherapy tables.

The Town of Granum Historical Board will improve the outdoor area at the Veteran’s Memorial Park using a $5,000 grant to install new brass plates on an existing cenotaph with names of Canadian veterans, as well as landscaping.

The current playground at the Taber Christian School lacks space for children to play and a $12,500 grant will be used to expand the playground for school and community use.

L.T. Westlake Fine Arts Elementary School in Taber will use a $3,500 grant for an African drum set that will expand the children’s interest and enjoyment of making music.

Beautifying the outdoor area of the Vulcan Hospital for patients going through difficult times is an important initiative for the Vulcan Healthcare Auxiliary and an $8,000 grant will be used to landscape and install structures in the area.

In April 2015 the Southern Alberta Individualized Planning Association moved to a larger location in Lethbridge and will use a grant of $4,500 for new office equipment in a self-advocacy room.

The Lethbridge 14th Scouts Group will use a $4,000 grant to purchase new camping equipment for the 80 children currently participating in the Lethbridge Scouts program.

The Lethbridge Soup Kitchen receives 75% of its food stock from local grocery stores and restaurants and a grant of $15,000 for a walk-in van will greatly assist this activity.

New Computers will be purchased by the Milk River Municipal Library using a $2,000 grant so that the community will be able to use the high speed Supernet provided in the library.

Science classes at St. Joseph School in Coaldale will be advanced with a grant of $5,000 for a 3-D printer as part of RC Technologies and Robotics initiative.

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