CPS Cowan2015 marks a momentous year for The Cowan Foundation as we celebrate two significant milestones - 20 years of building community and 20 million dollars in donations.

 “The Cowan Foundation was started in 1995 in honour of Frank Cowan, the founder of Frank Cowan Company and Cowan Insurance Group”, said Maureen Cowan, Chairman and Co-CEO Princeton Holdings Limited and Chairman of The Cowan Foundation.  “Although basking in accolades would have gone against his grain, we would be remiss if we didn’t offer him deserved thanks for placing such importance on building community where we do business. This strong focus on our community is an important part of the culture across the Princeton Holdings group of companies.”

“Over the past 20 years, The Cowan Foundation has made a significant impact in Canadian communities, supporting approximately 450 charitable organizations,” explained Terry Reidel, Executive Director, The Cowan Foundation.   “As our Operating Companies, including Cowan Insurance Group (and its subsidiaries: The Williamson Group, Millennium CreditRisk Management, Wentworth Financial Services and Cowan Financial Services), Frank Cowan Company, The Guarantee Company of North America, Cowan Asset Management, and Fountain Street Finance continue to grow and evolve, we look forward to continuing to partner with, and support, charities that matter to our employees, business partners, and clients, and that contribute to the well-being of Canadian communities.”

It has been a busy two decades full of partnership and positive impact, however our anniversary is not only about remembering the past, it is also about shaping the future. 

To celebrate this important milestone, in addition to the planned 2015 contributions, The Cowan Foundation has donated $20,000 to each of the following ten charitable organizations in Canada:

•    Accelerator Centre (Waterloo Region)

•    The CPS Foundation (National)

•    The Food Bank of Waterloo Region

•    Nova Vita (Brantford)

•    Phoenix Place, (Hamilton)

•    Second Harvest, (Toronto)

•    Brain & Mind Matters Community Fund /Stratford Perth Community Foundation

•    Woodstock District Developmental Services

•    YMCA Canada

•    YouthNet, (Ottawa Region)

Over the coming months they will share more detailed information about these ten charities and their programs.  A snapshot is included below:  

Accelerator Centre

Dedicated to building and commercializing technology startups, the Accelerator Centre, located in Waterloo, provides rigorous mentorship focused on growing strong, sustainable companies. The Cowan Foundation funds will support AC Momentum, a new program designed to help early-stage start-ups validate their idea and set the foundation for a successful business.  This 9-12 month in-house program guides young and/or new entrepreneurs through a structured market validation process that includes world-class mentoring, a dedicated incubation support team, educational sessions, rich networking environment, and professional office space at the AC.

The CPS Foundation

Since 1975, The CPS Foundation has acted as the charitable arm of the Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS-ECP), providing funding to enhance projects and programs that make Canadian waterways safer for all boaters. Through the support of The CPS Foundation, CPS-ECP’s network of trained volunteers provide quality education to its members, and the broader public, in safe boating practices.  Recently, a new device called the Boating Skills Virtual Trainer was developed. This new equipment provides simulated events that a boater will encounter in real life, giving instructors the opportunity to enhance classroom and on-line educational efforts. Support from The Cowan Foundation will assist in the provision of additional units for the use of our Squadron volunteers, at approximately 150 training facilities across the country.  http://www.cpsfoundation.ca/

The Food Bank of Waterloo Region

The Food Bank of Waterloo Region works to channel the community’s energy to ensure that no one goes hungry. One of the ways they support this vision is through food sorting activities.  On an annual basis, more than 1000 people and 85 corporate and community groups participate in food sorting activities at the Food Bank of Waterloo Region.  5500 hours of volunteer service is an essential part of ensuring that more than 600,000 pounds of food donations are prepared for distribution to community food programs.  The Cowan Foundation’s investment in this program helps to provide a safe work environment for community volunteers, ensures a level of service excellence, and timely food service delivery to member agencies and programs.

Nova Vita

Research and empirical evidence indicates two important facts: 1) domestic violence is intergenerational in nature and, to stop the cycle of domestic violence, it is essential that we intervene early; 2) the impact on children of witnessing domestic violence (either directly or indirectly), especially children 0 to 6 years of age, is very damaging to the cognitive, emotional and psychological development of a child. With the support of The Cowan Foundation, Nova Vita, in Brantford, is able to employ an Early Childhood Educator (E.C.E.) who works to help minimize the impact of witnessing domestic violence on children. Equally as important, the E.C.E. provides the opportunity for mothers to learn appropriate play activities, parenting skills and structure for their children, and offers much needed respite during an extremely stressful time in their lives.

Destinations

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Cowichan Bay to Genoa Bay – Almost the Gulf Islands

Cowichan Bay to Genoa Bay – Almost the Gulf Islands

 By Catherine Dook

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By Owen Hurst

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