BRCF Celebrates 25 Anniversary

Brokenhead River Community Foundation celebrates two important achievements.

In the mid 90’s, under the leadership of Gerald Hawranik, a group of interested and committed community volunteers came together to investigate the possibility of establishing a Community Foundation to serve the residents of the Beausejour/Brokenhead community. Those same individuals ultimately then served as the first Board of Directors for the Brokenhead River Community Foundation when it became an incorporated entity on February 16, 1998. Those founding Board members were:

Gerald Hawranik               Linda Pleskach                  Vicky Witzke                      Wilf Hastman

Bruce Schade                    Fred Kazina                        Art Berry                            Gerry Denisiuk

Since then, over 70 people have served on the Board as a Director or Administrative Person to assist in the growth and development of the organization. Their commitment and dedication to the success of the Foundation has and will continue to have an everlasting benefit to our community.

Today, February 16, 2023 the Foundation celebrates its 25th Anniversary.

“The current Board, and more importantly our community, is the benefactor of the vision of those community individuals who originally created the Foundation”, stated current Foundation President Reg Black. “The Foundation is also very grateful to all those in the community who served with the Foundation since 98”, he added.

In preparing to celebrate its 25th year, the Foundation launched a campaign last fall – Drive to a Million. The goal was to have $1,000,000 in gifted funds to the Foundation by its 25th Anniversary. “The campaign had been discussed by the Board for some time, but Covid delayed its launch”’ offered Danielle Gerylo, the Communications and Marketing Coordinator for the Foundation. “When the campaign was launched the Foundation had about $45,000 to raise in a few months. I am pleased to report that in early January 2023, the Foundation surpassed the $1,000,000 mark in donated/gifted dollars to the Foundation!”

All funds raised by donations or gifts to the Foundation are never spent. The funds are placed in various Endowment Funds as per the donors request and are invested for perpetuity.  A portion of the interest earned annually is given back to the community in the form of scholarships/bursaries to graduating students from EESS and grants to community groups/organizations. Since its inception, the Foundation has provided 136 scholarships and bursaries of $92,274.71 and 213 community grants of $399,635 for a total of $491,909.71 given back to our community over the last 25 years!

“That is one of the most gratifying things about donating to the Foundation is that your gift is an eternal gift that continues to help or support the community every year – forever”. Black said. However, he noted that the applications for scholarships/bursaries and community grants usually exceed the dollars available that the Foundation has to give back. “The Foundation needs to continue to grow because the needs of our community continue to grow so gifts are welcome at any time.”

“ A lot of people do not realize that there are various ways to give to a foundation”. Gerylo explained. Besides a gift of cash, cheque, credit card or etransfer, the Foundation also accepts gifts of stocks or bonds where a donor can avoid capital gains. Gifts from a Will or an estate can benefit the community while also reducing the taxes for your beneficiaries. “The Foundation welcomes the opportunity to discuss donor options at any time with those interested in supporting the community”, she added.

Watch for the Foundation to be more engaged in the Community and reaching more milestones as it follows its new tag line – “Growing our Community. Together. Forever!”

Additional information about scholarships/bursaries, community grants or donating is available on the Foundations website at  You can also follow the Foundation on various social media channels or by contacting Danielle at 431-343-2723.

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