$65,000 OTF Grant Helps Rebuild Volunteer and Funding Initiatives

Aug 28, 2022

Windsor, ON – In 2022, Connections Early Years (formerly known as The St. Mary’s Family Learning Centre) received a $65,000 Resilient Communities Fund grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Resilient Communities Fund to support rebuilding three vital areas impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This grant will help Connections increase fund development and public relations, improve volunteer and staff health and wellness support, and recover their volunteer base through outreach and programming.

“Our community is fortunate that Connections Early Years Family Centre continues to serve families of young children in spite of the stress caused by the pandemic,” said Lisa Gretzky, MPP for Windsor West. “I am happy to be able to congratulate the organization on receiving this Resilient Communities Fund grant which will allow them to expand their capabilities even further.”

The funding has allowed Connections to hire a full-time employee to enhance the ability to access financial resources and determine new or alternative sources of revenue. Thanks to this grant, the new full-time staff member will also implement a revitalized volunteer outreach system and develop wellness resources for volunteers and staff that are sustainable beyond this project’s end date.

“We are delighted to have this support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. This funding has provided us the ability to increase the awareness of Connections, and we are now well-equipped to provide services to more families with the additional support of volunteers.” – BARB BROWN, Executive Director, Connections Early Years Family CentreConnections Early Years Family Centre is committed to providing support, resources, and individualized services to promote the early learning and healthy development of families and their young children from ages 0 to 6.

Connections has an EarlyON Centre that offers groups for parents and children and free parenting education. They are also the creator of Be Back Soon, the only free short-term child care program in the region. Additionally, Connections is the lead agency of the Talk 2 Me Preschool Speech & Language Program, the Infant Hearing Program, the Blind-Low Vision Program, and the Ontario Autism Program’s Caregiver-Mediated Early Years Program.

Volunteers are essential for the Centre to serve over 17,000 unique children and adults who access services each year. Please visit connectwithus.ca or follow @connectionsEYFC on social media if you wish to inquire about volunteer opportunities.

About OTF The Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) mission is to build healthy and vibrant communities across Ontario. As an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations, last year, OTF invested nearly $209M into 2,042 community projects and partnerships, which included funding for the Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund. Since 2020, OTF has supported Ontario’s economic recovery by helping non-profit organizations rebuild and recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Visit otf.ca to learn more.

Media Contact Barb Brown – Executive Director, Connections Early Years Family Centre 519.252.9696 ext. 202 | bbrown@connectwithus.ca