Founded in 1999, the Parksville-Qualicum Community Foundation is celebrating 20 years providing grants that support local community organizations.
The Foundation works with donors to build endowments, grants funds to local organizations and initiatives, and brings neighbours together to strengthen community philanthropy. Donations received and Foundation earnings continue to get invested locally—helping to enhance quality of life in our communities.
The Foundation serves the area incorporating Deep Bay to Nanoose, inclusive of Errington and Coombs. It is one of 170 similar organizations located across Canada. We are members of Community Foundations of Canada, a national voice for this movement to use local resources and local stakeholders to find local solutions.
A Brief History
For Parksville-Qualicum, it took close to 5 years for the vision of a Foundation to be realized. A previous mayor, Art Skipsey, was inspired by a presentation made in 1992 by Richard Mulcaster, then CEO of the Vancouver Foundation. Art was motivated to invite an interested group of people from District 69 to consider establishing a local Community Foundation.
Convinced of the value and benefits this type of legacy organization could bring to the community, a small group formed to develop an action plan. Rick Foster, David Freeman and Karen (Walker) Flannery got on board, with Art. Jim Storey, Brad Wylie, and Brent Johnson.
This founding group—and several more individuals—identified language that continues to guide the work of our foundation today: envisioning vibrant communities through permanent legacies; building endowment funds by partnering with donors; and meeting community needs through Grant funds.
In 1999 initial seed money for PQ-Foundation was obtained from the Vancouver Foundation in the form of two matching grants of $25,000 each. Through enthusiastic fundraising efforts of the Board and members, the first year of operation finished with just over $116,000 in the endowment fund.
Looking Forward: Goals for 2020
The Foundation has an ambitious target for 2020—to build permanent endowment funds totaling $5 million. At present, the total equity of funds is almost $3.75 million. The Foundation is headed in the right direction! The income earned on these funds is paid back to the community through grants, which are awarded on an annual basis.
A big thank you to everyone who has contributed to the Foundation, to those who brought forward new ideas, supported community initiatives with donations, and the local stakeholders whose actions ensure that our communities will continue to be vibrant long into the future.