For the past 125 years, the Winnipeg Humane Society has been helping animals in our community, funded mostly through the generosity of our donors. A new partnership with The Winnipeg Foundation aims to ‘future-proof’ the WHS for the next 125+ years. Currently, more than 65% of our budget relies on donations and bequests. The WHS also has an endowment fund and we’ve trusted a portion of those monies to The Winnipeg Foundation to grow and generate a steady source of revenue, which will allow us to help animals for another century. This is an investment that will start to bear its fruits a few decades from now, but we need to plant the seeds today.
We selected The Winnipeg Foundation to steward your donor dollars because of its history and past performance. This is a big deal for both Winnipeg Humane Society Foundation (WHSF) and The Winnipeg Foundation because of its proven financial performance and security year over year in tough economic times, it is the wisest choice to secure our future. The Winnipeg Foundation also has a robust system of check and balances which adds an extra layer of trust to any prospective endowment donor.
As an added bonus, The Winnipeg Foundation has strong relationships with family lawyers and financial planners and can assist people wishing to leave a permanent legacy with the WHSF. Because of its demonstrated history, local family lawyers believe in them and our donor dollars are being put to work in a trusting way.
“Having two of the most prestigious and oldest established charities in Winnipeg work together for a better present and future of our community is inspiring,” says WHS CEO Javier Schwersensky. “And highlights the way we do things in our province: through collaboration and putting the needs of the community first. The Winnipeg Foundation provides access to low-cost, proven investments that will help the WHS Foundation grow its assets and assist our shelter in perpetuity.”
Endowment funds matter because they help secure the future of the WHS. The money invested is not for spending now. The interest on our investment will provide a secure and regular income for years to come. It is good business practice to ensure we are prepared for any scenario that comes our way.
“The Winnipeg Foundation is Canada’s first community foundation. As an endowment-based, public foundation, gifts are pooled and invested and the annual earnings are distributed back to the community,” says Rick Frost, CEO of The Foundation. In 2018, those distributions totalled more than $41 million. “Working together with the Winnipeg Humane Society Foundation, we will help ensure its future and its important work, for generations to come – For Good. Forever.”
In May of 2019, the Winnipeg Foundation received the following funds:
WHSF Long-Term Fund (from the WHS Foundation General Fund) $1,913,865.12
WHSF Endowed Funds:
The O’Regan Endowment Fund (a named fund bequested to us) $737,166.01
The E. Louise Nebbs Spay & Neuter Endowment Fund (recently created as a bequest from late Louise Nebbs) $799,742.21
People can now start their own sub-fund within the WHSF Agency Fund at The Winnipeg Foundation, with $10,000 (previous threshold was $100,000), and The Winnipeg Foundation takes care of everything else.
“The Winnipeg Foundation has a tremendous expertise helping individuals think about their legacy;” says Schwersensky. “And it gives the WHS the opportunity for its supporters to set up sub-funds with ease and incorporate other innovative approaches to philanthropy.”
After a competitive process, the rest of the monies currently held by the WHS Foundation has been trusted to Richardson GMP, and we are also working with them to offer a few innovative ways to ensure the financial stability of your WHS.