The Cochrane Foundation continues to be a champion of community issues and has recently awarded nearly $80,000 to local nonprofits organizations from its annual grant program.

The foundation has now reinvested over $1 million in support of the arts, environment, health and well-being, poverty, sports and recreation, and more.

"A hundred different nonprofits have received donations from the foundation over the years," says long-time foundation chair Tim Harvie. "It's reached a lot of people."

The foundation was created in 1993 and once its endowment fund reached critical mass it started disbursing grants in 1997.

"As the fund grows, there are more funds available, and last year we passed the million-dollar mark. There's been a lot of funds go back into a lot of great causes here in Cochrane."

Its main grant is designed to help organizations with infrastructure needs.

"We don't support operating costs or salaries, that sort of thing. We look at helping organizations buy the stuff they need or investing in buildings, like the rec centre, and new facilities."

The late Dr. George McQuitty was a medical doctor in Cochrane and left funds in his estate that allowed for the awarding of grants specifically for medical causes or students in post-graduate medical school.

The neighbourhood grant was created last year and is a flow-thru fund from the Calgary Foundation used to assist groups in organizing community events. 

The foundation has recently received official registered charity status after being administered by the Calgary Foundation since its inception.

Harvie says it has very much been a Cochrane fund from the start. He says they decided it was time to go on their own, and it took about a year to finalize charitable status.

"Now, when funds are donated to the Cochrane Foundation, we can tax receipt donors directly, and the funds go directly into the Cochrane Foundation fund. It saves a step of going through the Calgary Foundation. We believe it will help us grow the fund in the long-term."

There are 10 members on the foundation's board, all of them volunteers.

Due to current COVID-19 restrictions, the annual Ramada Cochrane Foundation Awards Celebration wasn't be held this year.

Applications open in December for next year's grants.   

For more information on the foundation, click here.


Below are the recipients of grants this year.

Community Capital Grants 2020: $63,335

Alberta Institute for Wildlife Conservation

Bethany Care Foundation

Bow Valley Habitat Development

Boys and Girls Club of Cochrane and Area

Cochrane & Area Humane Society

Cochrane & District Agriculture Society

Cochrane Pregnancy Care Centre

Cochrane Women’s Emergency Shelter Society (Big Hill Haven)

Extreme Cowboy Alberta Association

Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation

Jumping Pound Community Hall Society

Spray Lake Sawmills Recreation Park Society

United Youth Outreach - Skateboard Park

Variety-the Children’s Charity of Alberta Association

Neighbourhood Grants 2020: $11,167

Helping Hands Society of Cochrane & Area

Heartland Community Association

Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation

Dr. George McQuitty Memorial Fund 2020: $4,580

Shock Trauma Air Rescue Service Foundation