Community foundations mobilize to build 'smart and caring' nation for 2017, celebrating Canada's 150th birthday

Winnipeg Conference tracks Governor General's call to action two years ago

WINNIPEG, MB, June 3, 2013 /CNW/ - Two years after Canada's Governor General called on Canadians to help him build a "smarter and more caring nation" leading up to 2017, Canada's 191 community foundations are gathering in Winnipeg to personally share their progress with the Governor General and prepare to spread his message to communities from coast to coast over the next four years.

"We've been working on Smart & Caring Communities, our response to the Governor General's call since our last conference in 2011 and we're ready to share some of those stories and prepare for the next phase," says Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) President and CEO Ian Bird. "Our 2013 Conference is all about the difference we want to make in our communities leading up to the country's 150th and beyond."

CFC 2013 Conference: Inspiring Smart & Caring Communities is an international gathering of more than 600 community leaders taking place June 6 to 8 in Winnipeg, the birthplace of Canada's community foundation movement.

"The Winnipeg Foundation marked the beginning of what is now a nationwide movement of more than 191 community foundations," says Bird. "Together we hold more than $3.5 billion in assets and serve more than 80 per cent of the population, now we're ready to mobilize our national network in powerful and unprecedented ways."

On the agenda at this week's conference, to be held at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, are some of the most pressing issues facing Canadian communities, including Aboriginal affairs, food security, human rights, and engaging the next generation of thinkers and leaders in key debates about our shared future.

The CFC 2013 Conference will be opened by Shawn A-in-chut Atleo, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, who will talk via video about his bold plans for the future of Aboriginal people. The Governor General of Canada will also be featured in conversation with CBC host Shelagh Rogers. An inspiring lineup of presenters includes filmmaker and human rights advocate Alexandre Trudeau; renowned philanthropist Gail Asper; Sarah Sladek, a Next Gen intelligence guru and founder of XYZ University; and Jowi Taylor, founder of the multi-media project Six String Nation.

Conference participants are coming from across Canada, the United States, Europe, Africa, China, Russia and South America. Full details are available at

About Community Foundations of Canada
Community Foundations of Canada is the national network for Canada's more than 190 community foundations, which help Canadians invest in building strong and resilient places to live, work, and play. Community foundations are one of the largest supporters of communities, providing more than $143 million in support of local priorities and organizations in 2012. To find out more visit

Note to media: A backgrounder with conference highlight is available on our conference blog

SOURCE: Community Foundations of Canada

For further information:

For further information, and to schedule interviews, please contact:

Skana Gee
Media Relations Coordinator
Community Foundations of Canada
P: 902-466-7191
C: 902-223-5234

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Community Foundations of Canada

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