Donor Stories

The Travis Crompton Memorial Scholarship Fund

The Travis Crompton Memorial Scholarship Fund

The following words were written by Vivian Crompton to honour her son, Travis, who along with his sister Amber, died tragically in an automobile accident in 2007. Vivian and her husband, Len, have established a Memorial Scholarship at Boissevain High School to honour Amber and,through the Brandon Area Community Foundation, have established the Travis Crompton Memorial Scholarship at the Manitoba Emergency Services College in Brandon.

“Trav” a beautiful soul, a loving son, a friend Loving – giving – warm. A smile that made you feel as though you were the only one in the world…reserved just for you.

As his mom, I loved him more than my own life, and wish every day that I could trade places with him, so that he could be here.

As he had many dreams, he fulfilled mine… to have the privilege to be his mom. He would always say “you’re my girl”. He would look at me with his brown eyes and a smile that would melt your heart. I know I had his, and he mine, and I always knew he loved me. That is the gift he left for me… Every day I honour him… His friends felt the warmth of that beautiful smile. Just to be with him, he made you feel special. He also had a special place for his Dad, who spent every day working with him at their construction jobs. Trav always let him know he was proud of him, and how he was raised. He had a giving compassionate heart and felt empathy for others. Another gift he possessed. When he was with his friends he gave his undivided attention. Always giving his best – but little did he know then that just having him here is all they ever wanted. He has a special place in all their hearts.

The Travis Crompton Memorial Scholarship will be awarded annually to the recipient who possesses qualities and traits similar to Travis and his aspirations to become a firefighter.

The Caitlin Arksey Fund

The Caitlin Arksey FundIn 2003, at the age of 15, Caitlin Arksey was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma. She completed 18 rounds of intense chemotherapy, as well as a major Van Ness surgery to her right leg. With the use of a complex prosthesis, she regained her ability to walk and even to play school sports. After graduating with honours, she entered Brandon University to pursue her dream of becoming a pharmacist. But cancer returned to her lungs, and she again underwent surgery to remove the tumour. Then, a new cancer resulted in yet another surgery – this time, the disease spread to other parts of her body, and Caitlin lost her battle on March 21, 2009.

Caitlin was a charismatic young lady with many friends and acquaintances. Throughout her determined and courageous fight with cancer, she constantly thought of the well-being of others around her. She was fearless in her struggle, never pausing to ask, “Why me?” She was truly an inspiration for those around her, showing her dedication as a daughter, sister, granddaughter and friend; she had a smile for everyone. Caitlin will be missed by all those who knew her, and her brave story may inspire those who did not have that good fortune.

To honour Caitlin’s courage and spirit, her family established The Caitlin Arksey Fund. Contributions by family and friends have made it possible to provide grants that provide meaningful and relatively barrier-free assistance to families at the time of the patient’s treatment.

The Gord and Diane Peters Family Fund

The Brandon and Area Community Foundation received an amazing gift from Gord and Diane Peters. Their $1 million dollar contribution pledge made to BACF is a generous gift to the Foundation and to our community. The Peters’ contribution will be in the form of shares they personally own in Cando Contracting Ltd., the company that Gord co-founded in 1978. Their initial contribution of $500,000 was made in December 2008 and that donation will be followed up with additional commitments of $250,000 in 2009 and 2010.

Cando is an employee owned company that celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2008. It currently employs in excess of 270 people at over a dozen fixed locations across North America and whose head office is located in Brandon MB. Gord and Diane are very thankful for all the hard work and dedication that the Cando team has put into the company to make it into the success it is today. Cando and its employees have always been generous with their resources in whatever community they worked in. The company has introduced many innovative ideas such as an Employee Ownership Program in 1996 to make sure that all team members have an opportunity to share in Cando’s overall success. For Gord and Diane, giving is a very direct way to share their business success with their community. The Peters are long time residents of Brandon but are very proud of their rural Manitoba roots. Both came from families and communities that believed in the spirit of “giving back”. The BACF’s commitment to Southwestern Manitoba parallels the Peters’ desire to enhance their personal philanthropic goals.

A tremendous amount of Brandon’s wealth is in private business. We hope that this innovative donation from Gord and Diane can be a model and catalyst for other business owners,” said BACF Chair Keay Dobson- Golletz. “The amount, timing and creativity of Gord and Diane’s gift will be felt throughout the community and we are extremely grateful for their generosity.

Elsie Taylor Scholarship

Elsie Taylor ScholarshipThis scholarship honours the life of Elsie Taylor as well as her dedication to teaching and strong belief in higher education. Mrs. Taylor was born in Ontario in 1898 and, along with her family, came to make Rapid City, Manitoba her home in 1906. Educated and designated for her teaching profession at the age of 21, Elsie took the first of her many school assignments at the Robinville School. Subsequent years saw her posted to the Laurendale, Nedrob, Langruth, Vista, Scandinavia and other area schools. She took a hiatus from teaching in 1932 when her children came along but returned to it in 1953 at the McCreary School. Coming full circle, Mrs. Taylor concluded her career where she herself had been educated, in her home town of Rapid City.

To ensure that future generations from her home district would have the same educational opportunities, Jim and Elly Taylor established the Elsie Taylor Memorial Scholarship awarded annually to a student at Elton Collegiate who demonstrates a strong work ethic and diligence toward career potential.

Providing a Hand Up







Donations can be made in honor of Dr. Purdie to the Purdie Fund

Giving to a cause is most commonly linked to a personal connection or cause in a community that fosters the values of the giver. Such is the case with Dr. Frank Purdie, a loyal supporter and friend of The Brandon Area Community Foundation.

Dr. Frank Purdie speaks passionately of his life experiences growing up as the son of a country doctor in Griswold Manitoba. It is clear to see that Dr. Purdie’s sense of philanthropy was nurtured through being raised by hard working parents who did what they could to make life better for others and for their community. This upbringing also defined the passion, pride and ambition that Frank brought to his career as a doctor.

Frank Purdie graduated as a medical doctor in 1944 and met his future bride, nursing sister Gwyneth (“Jonesy”) Jones at Camp Borden in Ontario while he served as a medical officer in the Canadian Military. They were married in 1945 and returned to Manitoba in 1946 to start a new life together. Frank worked in Brandon as a family practitioner and later as a general surgeon and in 1961 became one of the founding doctors of the existing Brandon Medical Clinic. World travels for Frank and Jonesy followed Dr. Purdie’s official retirement in 1980 but his love of medicine and helping others led him to locum work in New Zealand, filling in for surgeons in rural Manitoba hospitals and participating in hearings for the College of Physicians and Surgeons. At 92 years young, Dr. Frank Purdie still resides in the Brandon west end home that he and Gwyneth built and where they raised their three children.

In 2006, Dr. Frank Purdie established two funds with Brandon Area Community Foundation in memory of his late wife, Gwyneth Purdie, the YMCA Youth Endowment Fund in support of YMCA “at risk” youth and the Gwyneth and Frank Purdie Family Fund in support of King George School early years literacy. Both funds exemplify the late Gwyneth Purdie’s love of children and reading as a hobby and learning tool that helps shape lives. A third fund, The Gwyneth and Frank Purdie Adult Literacy Fund in support of Samaritan House adult literacy programs was established in 2008. These funds all illustrate Dr. Purdie and the late Gwyneth Purdie’s desire to give a “hand up”, providing access to tools that will help the less fortunate build a successful future.

Many other worthwhile endeavours are the beneficiaries of the giving spirits of the Purdies and through their support of Brandon Area Community Foundation; the gifts of Frank and Gwyneth Purdie will continue to make a difference in our community for generations to come.