We live in one of the most generous communities in Canada. Thanks to our community’s generosity, we granted over $3 million to local organizations at the front lines of flood disaster relief and recovery in 2022. It was a record year for our granting programs, not only because of the Abbotsford Disaster Relief Fund, but also because we provided over $750,000 in funding for scholarships and bursaries, agricultural projects, community initiatives, and charitable work supporting Abbotsford’s most at-risk and vulnerable.
Our donors continue to humble us with their generosity, trusting us to manage their gifts in benefit of our local community, now and well into the future. We continue to do our best to ensure we’re distributing these funds promptly to where they’re needed most.
We are pleased to be able to share some highlights of the substantial impact our donors’ generosity had on our community in the past year:
The Abbotsford Disaster Relief Fund (ADRF), created in partnership with the University of the Fraser Valley and the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, opened for donations on November 17, 2021. Since then, we have raised over $4.4 million for flood relief! By the end of 2022, we distributed over $3.6 million to local charities, businesses, and residents, helping those directly impacted by the 2021 floods. These grants were vetted to ensure they were focused on those most affected by the floods and awarded quickly to ensure that those in need were supported as soon as possible. To learn more about the impact of the ADRF fund, click here.
Through our Smart & Caring Community Grants program, we awarded almost $160,000 to local charitable organizations supporting at-risk children, youth, and adults in our community. Programs funded for the well-being and caring of local families included the Starfish Backpack and Big Brothers Big Sisters Mentoring for Mental Health programs. View a complete list of all funded programs by clicking here.
In partnership with the City of Abbotsford, we granted $170,000 in Agricultural Enhancement Grants, supporting innovation in local agriculture with a technology focus. In 2022, projects funded included those supporting berry and mushroom farmers, researching rice production in the Fraser Valley, sustainable beef cattle finishing, and robotics to help automate agriculture labour. Learn more about these projects by clicking here.
Our popular Student Awards Program continues to grow as more and more local donors look to support local youth pursuing post-secondary educational opportunities. Whether a student is looking for an academic, trades, vocational, or arts focused education, we have awards for all interests! We provided over $420,000 in scholarships and bursaries to Abbotsford high school graduates in 2022. To learn more about the impact our Student Awards program has on local youth, click here.
Through the Mary Wakefield Animal Welfare Fund, we granted over $17,000 to support local organizations providing shelter and care to animals and livestock in need. Click here to learn more about this fund.
And thanks to our partnership with the City of Abbotsford and the Vancouver Foundation, our Neighbourhood Small Grants program provided over $11,000 to 22 community projects with local grassroots impact. Learn more about this program here.
None of this would be possible without the incredible support of our donors, volunteers, partners, staff, and supporters. Together, we truly do build a stronger, more caring community.
As part of our work this past year, we released our bi-annual Vital Signs report, which helps us understand how Abbotsford is growing and what its current and future needs may be so that we can be responsive to our community.
We also hosted the following events:
- The 7th Annual Smart & Caring Golf Classic, where we raised almost $120,000 to support at-risk families in our community
- Two Paul Nazareth events, one for the charitable sector and one for financial advisors, in order further develop Abbotsford’s philanthropic capacity.
Last but not least, we said goodbye to Wendy Neufeld, our Executive Director, for the past 5 years. Wendy retired at the end of 2022, having set up the Abbotsford Community Foundation to continue the lasting legacy of its donors. And we welcomed Areni Kelleppan as our new Executive Director. While Areni is new to Abbotsford, she grew up in the Lower Mainland, and brings a wealth of charitable experience and business acumen to support the work of the Foundation.
Interested in making an impact in our community in 2023? Contact Areni today at AreniK@abbotsfordcf.org