Town striking up ‘community foundation’

The town must decide what to do with $33,000 so it’s planning to form the “Fort Frances Community Foundation” to help do just that.
A public meeting on the issue is slated for Wednesday, May 22 at 7 p.m. at the Civic Centre.
“We’re inviting community-minded organizations to come out to determine where this money should go,” CAO Bill Naturkach said Tuesday.
Council approved the meeting at Monday night’s regular meeting.
This money earmarked for the town comes from the Winnipeg Foundation, which is responsible for the Moffat Family Fund.
Last year, the Randy Moffat family donated $100 million to the Foundation to help families in 12 communities where the former Moffat Communications did business, including Fort Frances.
“Our goal with this is first to determine what we do in 2002. Then, we determine what we’ll do further on down the line,” said Naturkach, referring to the fact the town will receive such funding year after year.
“A lot of communities have a committee like this,” he noted. “While we’ve always had community-minded groups, like the Canadian Cancer Society and the La Verendrye expansion group, their focus was much more narrow.”
“It’s a significant amount that was left to the Foundation. Depending on the investment, the fund could grow as high as $100,000 a year,” said Mayor Glenn Witherspoon, who will represent the town on the new Foundation along with Coun. Sharon Tibbs.
“So, we want one solid group that could touch all the groups that could use this money to help, for example, a poverty-stricken family,” the mayor added.
Naturkach noted the Foundation also could deal with any other community funding that comes along in the future, like state bequeaths.
The decision to have open up the Foundation to as many community organizations as possible was made after a preliminary meeting a couple of weeks ago.
This meeting was attended members of a handful of local groups, including the Fort Frances Salvation Army, the Rainy River District Social Services Administrative Board, Canadian Cancer Society, and the Riverside Foundation for Health Care.