Biggest Giveway in 15 years

Quesnel Community Foundation is disbursing $60,000 this year to various local charities.

Cathy Briggs says get your tickets early to avoid disappointment as this year’s $60,000 disbursement to local non-profit projects is going to be a popular event.

Cathy Briggs says get your tickets early to avoid disappointment as this year’s $60,000 disbursement to local non-profit projects is going to be a popular event.

As the Quesnel Community Foundation (QCF) puts the final touches on their 15th anniversary celebration April 9, the community can be very proud of their efforts. From a mere $50,000, donated to the community after hosting the B.C. Winter Games, in 2001, the permanent endowment fund is now more than $2 million.

The QCF exists to meet the needs of this community through the growth and management of the permanent endowment fund. The goal is to use the income generated to promote the well being of the community by providing grants to charitable organizations. QCF, as responsible volunteers, is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life within the community.

Cathy Briggs has been with QCF for three and half years.

“For me, it was quite a change to switch from non-profit fundraising to a foundation which gives money away,” she said.

“The foundation exists because of the endowment which enables the foundation to distribute the accrued interest to local organizations and group projects. It’s exciting being involved with groups who receive QCF funds, many of which don’t have access to other funding sources. It feels great.”

The numbers speak for themselves.

Since 2002, QCF has made 142 awards for a total of $420,497 to 72 different groups. This year will be the largest disbursement of $60,000 to 15 organizations.

There were 28 letters of intent asking for $155,000, so it shows that QCF is becoming well known in this community. The first year of disbursement, QCF gave out six grants totally $5,700. The foundation has come a long way in 15 years.

The endowment fund grows with every donation received. Many people donate to QCF as their way of giving back to the community. This fund is never spent, only the interest generated by the endowment fund is distributed to groups in Quesnel.

QCF also provides the opportunity to establish memorial funds such as the Brenda Lee Campbell Memorial Bursary. The bursary was created to honour Brenda’s incredible commitment to her patients, the community and her family. 42 donations from coworkers, friends and family resulted in nearly $15,000 in a very short period of time which allows this bursary to continue for years to come. This year $750 will be awarded through SD28 to a student entering the nursing or caregiving programs. Next year the bursary will be available through QCF and will be open to anyone enrolled in a continuing education program related to geriatric care.

“We raised our children here and still live here and enjoy what Quesnel has to offer,” Briggs said.

“The Briggs Family fund, as part of the endowment fund, will continue to benefit the community long after we’re gone.”

With the gala just less than two weeks away, Briggs is very excited.

“It’s a fabulous, fabulous night, it’s so much fun,” she said.

“The main focus of the evening, April 9 at the Seniors Centre, is the distribution of 15 grants totally $60,000. WOW!”

The evening also includes a live and silent auction with terrific items, all locally donated. You could be the proud winning bid on such prizes as two tickets with Rocky Mountaineer for their Gold Leaf Excursion, CMA tickets to Vancouver or some incredible artwork, plus much more. These auctions are a fundraiser for the ongoing work of a proud volunteer working board and a part-time staff, along with many volunteers in the community who enhance the generosity of every single donor and enable the endowment fund to work for the community. With a Western theme this year, Briggs wants everyone to dress in their best boots and jeans and slap on their cowboy hat for a fun evening.

Tickets, $50 each, are available at Circle ‘S’ Western Wear or by emailing qcf@shaw.ca or calling 250-983-9295.

Quesnel Cariboo Observer

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