YWCA's Sarah Blackstock named a 'vital' leader by the Toronto Community Foundation

TORONTO, Feb. 24, 2012 /CNW/ - YWCA Toronto's Director of Advocacy & Communications, Sarah Blackstock, is one of the Toronto Community Foundation's new Vital People and the recipient of a leadership grant. The Vital People grant program recognizes valued leaders who are making outstanding contributions working at not-for-profit organizations by supporting their continued training and professional development.

"I am honoured to be receiving this grant which I will be using to deepen my leadership skills by taking a course at U of T's Rotman School of Management," says Blackstock. "Investing in leaders in the non-profit sector helps ensure the sector is able to do excellent and innovative work. A vibrant, creative non-profit sector is vital to solving the complex problems our communities face. I am thrilled to have the chance to build my leadership skills so I can offer my very best to our communities."

"Toronto benefits significantly from the not-for-profit organizations playing a key role in addressing the city's critical issues," said Rahul K. Bhardwaj, Toronto Community Foundation, President & CEO. "But, we're seeing two significant trends related to not-for-profit leadership. Many organizations are facing a lack of middle management infrastructure and our aging population also means we have aging leaders. We need to better support and equip the next generation of leaders to handle the challenges ahead."

Vital People are selected for their ability to take initiative, make a contribution, and demonstrate leadership in the not-for-profit sector. Grants of up to $5,000 are funded through the Community Foundation's Vital Toronto Fund and awarded to support the formal training or other informal development opportunities that best enable not-for-profit leaders to build their skills and knowledge or apply their experience in different ways to enhance their leadership contributions. Grants are available to those just taking on new leadership challenges as well as those with many years of experience.

Since 2004, the Toronto Community Foundation has invested more than $359,000 in the professional development of 75 leaders. This year, with additional gifts from the Helen McCrea Peacock Foundation and Griggs Family Foundation at the Toronto Community Foundation, Vital People grants were awarded to 12 leaders, a total of investment of $54,400.

For a complete list of this year's Vital Toronto grant recipients, please visit www.tcf.ca.

YWCA Toronto
The YWCA transforms the lives of women and girls by offering a range of housing options, employment and training programs, community support programs, girls' programs and family programs. The organization also engages in systemic advocacy.

Toronto Community Foundation
With more than 325 endowment funds and assets under administration of more than $250 million, the Toronto Community Foundation is one of Canada's largest public charitable foundations. Our mission is to connect philanthropy to community needs and opportunities, all with a vision to make Toronto the best place to live, work, learn and grow, through the power of giving.

SOURCE YWCA Toronto

For further information:

Simone Dalton
Media Relations & Communications Officer
Toronto Community Foundation
416-921-2035 x 218
sdalton@tcf.ca

Sarah Blackstock
Director of Advocacy & Communications
YWCA Toronto
416-892-6845 

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YWCA Toronto

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