Waskesiu Foundation - Enhancing the Waskesiu Experience

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A registered charity supporting recreational, social, cultural and environmental activities that enhance the Waskesiu experience


Early Beginnings

The Waskesiu Foundation Inc. was founded as a registered charity in 1999, and was originally called the Waskesiu Townsite Enhancement Society Inc. (WTESI). The original purpose of the organization was to facilitate resurfacing Waskesiu's tennis courts. Following completion of that project, however, WTESI was essentially left dormant - until a series of unforeseen events led to not only its revival but, ultimately, set it on a path towards being a vibrant, community-based charitable foundation that would positively impact Waskesiu.

Unforeseen Events Create a Need

In 2001, a particularly severe outbreak of spruce budworm in

much of western Canada, including Prince Albert National Park,

posed a threat to the white spruce forest in Waskesiu. The

community urged Parks Canada to take action. Parks Canada

agreed to spraying a biological control agent on the condition

the community raise and contribute about two-thirds of the total


Changing the Mandate and the Name

Don Ravis, then Chair of the Waskesiu Community Council,

wanted WTESI to play a leading role in accepting donations for

the spraying. To do so, however, it became necessary for

WTESI to revisit its rather narrow list of charitable purposes.

Long-time Waskesiu resident and lawyer, Jim Kerby, advised

the Council and WTESI regarding the preparation of new bylaws

and a revised set of charitable purposes. These included

adding a new mandate for environmental protection and

enhancement, and a revision of the charity's name to

something more fitting. Thus came into being the Waskesiu

Foundation. The response from the Waskesiu community for

funding to fight the spruce budworm infestation was immediate

and successful. The community leaders quickly recognized

that more – much more – could be accomplished in the Park

via the Foundation. Their instincts proved to be correct.

Enhancing the Waskesiu Experience

The long list of projects successfully completed by the

Waskesiu Foundation is truly impressive. The unquestioned

success of the Foundation, however, started with a clearly

stated mission – to "enhance the Waskesiu experience".

The Foundation does so by successfully partnering with

other local groups. It also does so by consistently identifying community-valued projects, raising sufficient funds, and constantly improving the community of Waskesiu. Since 1999, the Foundation has raised almost $3 million to re-invest in Waskesiu and area. Thanks to the generosity of donors and community partners, you can see (and enjoy) the results of that investment throughout the Waskesiu townsite, and beyond.

Looking forward, the important work of the Waskesiu Foundation continues. We hope that the community will embrace the recently launched
Planned Giving and Endowment initiatives as part of a longer-term vision for enhancing the Waskesiu experience now, and for future generations.

The Foundation at Work

See our Objects and Purposes for the scope of our charitable activities.

See our Current Projects and Completed Projects pages and Photo Galleries for examples of what we do.

Our Core Values

The following principles and beliefs govern the way our Foundation makes decisions and pursues our mission.

  • Donor Care and Recognition: We recognize that the Waskesiu Foundation exists through the generosity of our donors, and we strive to nurture, encourage and develop ongoing relationships with them.
  • Responsible Stewardship: We manage all Foundation funds in a transparent and responsible way.
  • Diversity: We seek to understand, respect and honour the perspectives and experience of others as we strive to enhance Waskesiu as a beautifully rich and diverse community.
  • Collaboration with Others: We work closely with other Waskesiu community organizations to advance our mission.

Click here to read or download our 
Waskesiu Foundation brochure.