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General News · 26th December 2021
Mark Spevakow
The Cortes Island Community Foundation exists to support the wide variety of nonprofits, charities, community organizations, programs, and initiatives on the island. And to this end, we have made significant strides in 2021. CICF received charitable status and is now a registered charity in Canada. We also became a member of the Community Foundations of Canada, joining over 191 other community foundations across the country who work to help build and strengthen their own communities by encouraging and supporting local philanthropy and by connecting people and organizations who want to make a difference.

This year, with the help our part-time hire, Manda Aufochs Gillespie, we worked with other island nonprofits to develop an informal networking group, the Cortes Island Social Profit Network. This group represents nearly all of Cortes Island’s 20+ grassroots organizations, nonprofit organizations, and charities. We also paid for a Community Grants Database that is accessible by all the Cortes nonprofits and provided fundraising advice and grant guidance for a dozen island organizations. This led to more than $100,000 additional dollars for local community projects.

In partnership with Cortes Literacy and the Cortes Community Health Association, we helped deliver almost $20,000 in small, immediately actionable micro-grants for neighbours to over 30 projects, including Klahoose youth cultural and language programs, women’s aging support groups, youth programs, and so much more. We also worked with the Cortes Community Health Association to raise $30,000 for a micro, mobile temporary workspace (“the pod”) for island nonprofit workers and volunteers.

And to finish off the year, we were able to set up The Forever Fund- a permanent fund with the Vancouver Foundation with a starting balance of $10,000. The Vancouver Foundation will be holding and professionally managing our long-term community investments. These funds will be held in their Socially Responsible Investment Fund, which places our funds into investments with strict environmental, social, and corporate governance. Our long-term goal is to grow our endowment and set up additional funds in partnership with the island social profits in order to grow the proceeds that support the needs of Cortes.

The Cortes Island Community Foundation looks forward to continuing our development in 2022 with the launching of our new website, our work as a philanthropic partner with our island social profit community, and continued efforts to assess the needs and opportunities on Cortes Island. We look forward to working will all of you as we step together into the new year.

We are blessed to be of service to such a unique community.


The CICF Board of Directors
Deepa Narayan, Mark Spevakow, Ian Watson, Christina MacWilliam, John Preston, De Clarke, Forrest Berman-Hatch