ARTS & CULTURE
Woodstock Little Theatre – Making it possible for more youth to participate in STAGES
Donations from two funds, the Brian & Rosemary George Cultural and the Ross & Fran McElroy made it possible for youth with financial challenges to participate in the STAGES Youth Theatre Program. Eager youth were able to enjoy the technical, dramatic, and social development that only an amateur live theatre program can provide!
Woodstock Art Gallery – Supporting senior leaders to mentor and inspire youth
The Rosemary & Brian George Cultural and Doug & Yvonne Eckel Funds
supported the Woodstock Art Gallery’s IMPRINTING GENERATIONS, a project led and inspired by seniors. The environmentally friendly, intergenerational printmaking program increases participation in our communities, allowing our seniors to mentor our youth. The project expands community connections by offering intergenerational, hands-on, studio
based learning activities focused on fostering well-being through the creative process.
Woodstock Fanshawe Singers – Sharing the joy of singing in a choir in our community
Grants from the Doug & Yvonne Eckel and the Henning Hansen Memorial Funds supported Woodstock Fanshawe Singers choral techniques workshop. The workshop brings new and experienced voices together, improves singing skills, builds community and ultimately creates an improved experience for audiences. New singers are introduced to the choral experience and opportunities available in our community.
Thistle Theatre – Sharing the legacy of George Leslie Mackay
Local enthusiasts wanted to tell the story of George Leslie Mackay, the first local
foreign missionary commissioned by the Presbyterian Church of Canada. The group held and invested their fundraising donations at Oxford Community Foundation. OCF looked after the fund for Thistle Theatre as they produced Kai the Barbarian, the story of a Zorra lad born 174 years ago. Mackay, a bit of a rebel, had a burning desire to be a missionary and was able to convince the foreign mission commission to send him to Formosa, now known as Taiwan. To this day in Taiwan Mackay is remembered for his many contributions, including building schools and a hospital.
Jordan Hawkins Memorial Scholarship to Leon Yalda
Lessif Family Fund Scholarship to Norman Wronski-Starzycki
Pat & Barry Smith Scholarships to Quintan Bruce, Amy Martin, Grace McLeod
and Jenna Rutherford
Laurie Hawkins Memorial Scholarship to Samantha Moreau
Cassandra Hawkins Memorial Scholarship to Alissa Alyea
Lorna & George Roberts Scholarship to Daniel Colcuc
Junior Achievement – Financial support to help students create successful
A grant from the Alabastine-Wilkinson Fund supported the Junior Achievement (JA) Company Program. Guided by JA trained mentors and volunteers from the local community, students develop entrepreneurial, financial literacy, work readiness and leadership skills. The hands-on program assists students in learning the risks and rewards of starting and running a business and how to build positive relationships in their community.
South Norwich Historical Society – Preserving the historical Grand Trunk Railway Station
External painting, fixing window leaks and flashing around the chimney – a grant from the Alabastine-Wilkinson Fund to South Norwich Historical Society is supporting these necessary repairs to enhance and maintain a significant 1881 heritage building. The Grand Trunk Railway Station in Otterville houses many artifacts and permanent displays featuring railway construction of the 1880s. The Underground Railroad, early Black settlement of the area and our early Quaker heritage are all highlighted in the museum.
Ontario Genealogical Society – Ensuring the longevity of our greatest local
A grant from the Joland Family Fund to the Oxford branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society funded the purchase of a bookcase to safely store the Tweedsmuir History Collection, as well as special binders for other historical documents. The more than 150 Tweedsmuir books were put together by Oxford County Branches of The Women’s Institute and contain an abundance of information for genealogists. Everyone is welcome to visit the Society and browse!
HEALTH & WELLNESS
Woodstock Hospital – Maternal Child Unit Vital equipment for the Maternal Child Unit
John and Liz Lessif designated a grant from the Lessif Family Fund to the purchase of Pital Harnesses for the Maternal Child Unit at Woodstock Hospital. These neonatal harnesses make transporting our youngest and most vulnerable local patients significantly safer.
Operation Sharing – Offering an innovative and inclusive eatery and culinary
Operation Sharing Agency Fund supports the operating and capital costs of their Bullwinkles Eatery which takes pride in its inclusive environment where all can share a meal and conversation. Operation Sharing also provides a culinary and hospitality training program, promoting healthy diet choices and teaching all aspects of running a restaurant to local residents regardless of social or economic barriers.
VON Oxford – New blood pressure machines
A grant from the Ross & Fran McElroy Fund is helping Oxford County residents stay healthy and remain independent in their homes longer. Their grant helped fund the purchase of new blood pressure machines for the VON Oxford’s free measurement and monitoring sessions held throughout the year in Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and Woodstock.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ingersoll Tillsonburg & Area Bake & Learn – Helping youth learn new skills
A grant from the Maple Leaf Fund allowed Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Ingersoll Tillsonburg & Area to replace their old and broken kitchen appliances. BBBS helps reduce the cycle of poor eating habits and “quick fix” meals through their food literacy programs supporting healthy eating and food preparation in a fun and interactive way.
Ontario Student Nutrition Program – Everything including the “kitchen sink” for School Nutrition Programs!
Fridges, stoves, cutting boards, knives, bins, carts – The Maple Leaf Community Fund purchased these items and more for 13 School Student Nutrition Programs (SNPs) in Oxford County. Children receive healthy breakfasts and/or snacks ensuring they attend school well-nourished and ready to learn. Increased access to these healthy foods in a non-stigmatizing manner improves their academic performance, attention and engagement.
Foldens Baseball Diamond – Let there be light for baseball!
A grant from the Canada Summer Games Fund is supporting the replacement of Foldens Ball Diamond and Park’s outdated and ill-functioning lighting system. Park usage and baseball registration are both up, and better and more efficient lighting will make for safer play and easier bulb replacement.
SOCIAL & COMMUNITY SERVICES
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ingersoll Tillsonburg & Area – Funding for important
In-School Mentoring Program
A grant from the Ken & Lynda Whiteford Fund supports the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ingersoll Tillsonburg & Area In-School Mentoring program. Youth are matched with a role model and a friend to talk to and share the experiences of growing up. Mentors meet weekly with their mentee and engage in activities such as board games, crafts or just hanging out on school grounds.
Donor designated funds at Oxford Community Foundation create a community legacy that gives for generations to come. Additional grants from donor designated funds were made as follows:
Dr. Patricia Brown Fund to Knox Presbyterian Church
Hawkins Memorial Fund to Woodstock Minor Hockey
Joland Family Fund to Grand Erie District School Board and Evergreen Cemetery in Lynedock
Ross & Fran McElroy Fund to Ingamo Homes and Children’s Aid Society of Oxford
Frank & Marion Smith Fund to Operation Sharing
Ken & Lynda Whiteford Fund to Ingersoll Nature Club