RBC grant will make "Maker Space" a reality

RBC's Curtis Sanjenko and Miranda Rawson (left), along with Altona Community Foundation President Chris Sumner and Vice-President Loren Braul (right), present Marty Falk and Sheridan Sawatzky of the Altona Youth for Christ Station with a $15,000 grant through the RBC Future Launch Community Challenge. LORI PENNER/Red River Valley Echo

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The Altona Community Foundation (ACF), with support from the RBC Foundation through the RBC Future Launch Community Challenge, presented Altona Youth for Christ/The Station with a $15,000 grant today to support the creation of a “Maker Space”.
ACF was selected earlier this year to participate in the RBC Future Launch Community Challenge.
It’s hosted by participating community foundations serving small and medium-sized communities (up to 150,000 residents).
“We are thrilled to provide this grant to Altona YFC, and are grateful the RBC Foundation, through the Future Launch Community Challenge, has provided us this opportunity,” said ACF President Chris Sumner.
“We feel the Maker Space project fits the goals of the Challenge perfectly, and will give young people the opportunity to develop the skills needed for tomorrow’s workforce.”
With the goal of creating a space where teens have the opportunity to build and create using the latest technology, the Maker Space will address several needs in the Altona area.
The youth of our community desperately need a space to be creative and learn productive skills,” explained Altona YFC/The Station Executive Director Sheridan Sawatzky.
“Many of the teens of our community don’t have the financial means to pursue learning new technology based skills. We have a space and dedicated volunteers, and with this investment, we can teach new skills to the teens of our community, skills that could give them a new artistic outlet, or job skill.”
The $15,000 grant will be used to purchase equipment including 3D printers, laser engravers, vinyl plotters and more.
It will also support staff and leaders as they move the Maker Space project forward. Development of the space will begin immediately.
Curtis Sanjenko, Community Manager for RBC’S Pembina Valley market says he was impressed by the goals that YFC has for The Station.
“What stood out to us was the fact it was really in-line with many of the things RBC would promote as part of the Future Launch initiative like skill development, seeking those practical trade-based activities that will prepare youth for tomorrow which are maybe a bit non-traditional from what we’ve seen in past years,” he said, adding,
“This particular group, clearly they’re going to put the money to use in things that will get students and youth hands-on (experience), and something they can take forward with them in future endeavours and in possibly their own learning.”
The RBC Future Launch Community Challenge is hosted by Community Foundations of Canada and participating community foundations, and is made possible thanks to a $5M donation from RBC Foundation.
It is part of RBC Future Launch, a commitment by RBC and the RBC Foundation to empower Canadian youth for the jobs of tomorrow.
Over the next 10 years, RBC Future Launch is dedicating $500 million to help young people access meaningful employment through practical work experience, skills development opportunities, networking solutions and mental well-being supports and services.

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