Twenty years ago, farsighted local politicians created the Grand Bend Community Foundation from the proceeds of the sale of Grand Bend’s PUC. Beginning today, that vision will be expanded to serve a wider region under the name Sunset Community Foundation.
“The name change reflects our commitment to support the development of community funds in Huron County and beyond,” says Chair Deb Gill. “While staying true to the vision of our founders and original donors, we also want to ensure that charities across our region have access to the services of a community foundation.”
Established in 2001, The Grand Bend Community Foundation now has more than $3 million permanently invested and has made grants totaling nearly $2 million. Among the projects supported: a beachfront stage, food banks, sports and recreation facilities, mentorship programs for vulnerable children, scholarships for local students, tree planting, and much more. The Grand Bend funds will continue to be held, managed, administered, and granted as they currently are.
The Foundation currently holds two funds serving the municipality of South Huron. Tom Prout of Exeter, Ontario, helped create these funds. “I’ve learned how important it was for any community to have this resource,” he says. “By working with the Grand Bend Community Foundation, we were able to get something started that will benefit our community for many years to come.”
Prout hopes South Huron will provide a model for other communities in Huron County and elsewhere.
Gill says the name change is about being welcoming and inclusive. “We want other communities to know we’re ready to help them. For donors who want to build stronger and more just and inclusive communities, now and forever, there is now a great option.”