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The children’s garden at Immanuel Anglican Church Regina came to life in 2022 thanks to a grant from AFC’s Say Yes! To Kids (SYTK) initiative. The kids had great fun digging, planting, and watering. By July the garden had started producing, and children enjoyed eating what they had grown. Who knew how delicious lettuce is when you pick it yourself?
“In recent years we have been able to push our grants program to greater heights thanks to the steadily increasing generosity of AFC supporters,” says Dr. Scott Brubacher, Executive Director, AFC. “We know 2022 presented huge challenges to our members and we are grateful for the steadfast support of AFC donors.”
“At the end of October we successfully accomplished our goal of running Bible Camps in the seven Arctic Communities of Inuvik, Tuktoyaktuk, Fort McPherson, Paulatuk, Aklavik, Kugluktuk and Cambridge Bay,” says Robin Abrol, Director of Ministry. “Over 190 Inuit and Gwich’in children, ages 5-11, heard the good news of Christ’s love and care.”
Messages of gratitude pour in as grant applicants notified. “Communication is of utmost importance for our area,” says Bishop Isaiah Larry Beardy, Indigenous Suffragan Bishop for the Northern Manitoba Area Mission. His Starlink Community Hubs project was one of 15 successful applicants in the RFP for Indigenous Ministries.
Rob Dickson, Chair of the Grants Policy Working Group, says the new and much larger Category C grants have the potential to be a game-changer for smaller dioceses. “The opportunity to submit a $50,000 grant request is well-suited to a diocese that may have the capacity to bring only one project per year, but a transformational project the entire diocese can rally around.”
“The Board had originally authorized $100,000 for the RFP, thanks to a generous bequest AFC received earlier this year to support Indigenous Ministries. However, during the grant review process it became clear that we needed to release a greater amount from this bequest to support these worthy projects.”
“This year, the Grants Policy Working Group undertook a major review of our granting policies in light of the Board’s desire to provide greater impact and to drive transformational ministry across the Canadian Church,” says Dr. Scott Brubacher, Executive Director. The resulting recommendations focus on three key areas.
Many of the children in the program were struggling with ADHD, anxiety, depression, family illness, divorce and understanding their gender and sexual identity. Sandra Clarke says, “Our team did their best to create a non-judgemental environment where all the children could benefit, feel included and supported in their choices.”