“For today’s needs and tomorrow’s dreams!”

Our Mission

The mission of the Altona Community Foundation is to enhance the quality of life in Altona, Gretna, Rosenfeld, and the Municipality of Rhineland. This is done by soliciting funds for our capital reserve and distributing the interest earned each year to worthy community projects. As our capital reserve grows, the more dollars we can distribute. A contribution to the Foundation lasts forever as the capital reserve is always left intact while the interest earned is invested back into the community. Since inception, the Foundation has distributed $813,000 in funds.

Our History

On November 17, 1993, about 20 members of the business community accepted a lunch invitation from the Thomas Sill Foundation to explore the idea of creating a community foundation in Altona.

The Thomas Sill Foundation was offering $100,000 in seed money to Manitoba communities to establish foundations of their own. They would donate $1 for every $2 that community foundations raised in the following four years to a maximum donation of $100,000.

The inaugural meeting of the Altona Community Foundation took place on December 13, 1993, and the first board was formed that included: president, Peter Cole; vice-president, Don Wiebe; secretary, David Friesen; treasurer, Robert Martens and directors, Anne Kroeker, Al Friesen, Wilbert Friesen, Barry Lundin, and Dr. Dieter Bueddefeld. The foundation went on to become incorporated on January 19, 1994.

In 2011, the Altona Community Foundation grew the capital fund from $950,000 to $1,032,000 in four months and surpassed its million-dollar goal. “Sometimes it can be a difficult sell to convince people to give a $100 donation to the foundation that only pays out interest, as opposed to spending the money on something immediate. You have to remember this is a legacy give and that $100 is not only going to give back to the community this year but for years to come,” 2011 foundation president Chad Friesen.

The Altona Community Foundation celebrated another record-setting year in 2020 which saw them grant the most money back to the community in its history. Between the spring 2020 grants and two rounds of the Government of Canada’s Emergency Community Support Fund (ECSF), ACF provided nearly $91,000 to non-profit organizations in the Town of Altona and Municipality of Rhineland. “Our board was thrilled to support these groups, and the projects they wanted to move forward this year, giving back to the community when needed most, with the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic,” 2020 foundation president Chris Sumner.

Altona Community Foundation continues to be thankful for the ongoing support it receives from their donors which allows the foundation to continue its track record of granting thousands of dollars back to non-profit organizations in the community every year.

Board Members

HAYDON FRIESEN

President

Haydon has been working with Prairie Insurance Brokers since 2017. Haydon is actively involved with the Altona Maroons and Senior Bisons. He enjoys spending time at Oakview Golf Course in the summer. Haydon joined the foundation in 2021.

AL FRIESEN

Vice-president

Al joined the foundation in 2022 and is a lifelong resident of Altona, having served in leadership roles in numerous community organizations and events including co-chairing six provincial curling championships. The former Altona mayor is excited about rejoining the Altona Community Foundation where he first served as a founding board member in 1994.

ANGUS KLASSEN

Treasurer

Angus Klassen is the Controller at Golden West Broadcasting. He enjoys spending time golfing and camping. Angus joined the foundation in 2019.

VIC LOEWEN

Vic has been employed as a sales consultant at West Park Motors since 2004. He is a former president of the Altona Chamber of Commerce. In his spare time he enjoys spoiling his four grandchildren. Vic joined the foundation board in 2021.

SHAUNA GIESBRECHT

Shauna, co-owner of Twelve Salon and Spa joined the foundation in 2023. Shauna keeps busy at the Salon and working for the family trucking company. She is co-chair for the Rhineland Area Justice Committee and has served on the board for the Altona & District Chamber of Commerce and the Altona Sunflower Festival.

JONATHAN TOEWS

Jonathan recently retired from a 20 year career with Border Land School Division. Currently he is working for the Manitoba Rural Learning Consortium as Executive Director. He has been and continues to be involved in various boards and community initiatives and is excited to be part of the Altona Community Foundation. Jonathan joined the board in 2022.

LEANNE BRAUN

Leanne was born and raised in Altona and has chosen to make it her lifelong home. She is an educator and for the past 20 years has been the principal at Ecole Parkside School. She loves rural life and all the moments that include her husband, children and grandchildren. Leanne joined the board in 2023.

RALPH HAMM

Ralph has served on a variety of committees and boards over the years including the Altona Chamber of Commerce, Manitoba Sunflower Festival, Altona United Church, Altona Minor Baseball and South Central Minor Baseball. In his spare time, he enjoys coaching the Senior Bisons and gardening. Ralph joined the board in 2023.

JO FUNK

Jo has lived in the community for the last 10 years. She has worked at Access Credit Union since 2019. Jo has actively been involved with parent council at her children’s schools, and currently serves as treasurer of the Ecole Parkside School Advisory Council. She enjoys spending time with her family and travelling. Jo joined the foundation in 2023.

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