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Winkler’s Youth Vital Conversation

March 12, 2020

The Winkler Community Foundation hosted Vital Conversation: Engaging Youth on Thursday February 20, 2020. We had 30 people attend; 18 individuals between the ages of 15-29 and 12 Community Leaders. The goal was to ring youth and community leaders together; to build new partnerships and develop tangible actions that participants can take away to make Winkler an attractive place for young people to get involved and feel they belong. The outcomes will also be used to guide future granting priorities for the Winkler Community Foundation.


“We are here for one reason and that is to make change happen.” – Caleb Vallelly, Local High School student

“I felt it was a very important conversation because it gave a lot of new ideas and perspectives, and the event gave me a better sense of community in the sense that it was heart warming to see how many people turned up and wanted to discuss how we can better this community, not only for youth but for the generations to follow.” – Samantha Toews, Genesis House Staff

The main themes that arose around the table discussion included:

  1. Need for some form of public transportation
  2. Need for financial literacy & education around housing
  3. Need to growing the awareness of mental health and education on local resources available.
  4. Affordable Post-secondary options


Some of the common Actionable outcomes included:

1. Public Transportation

2.Financial Literacy and Education

3. Mental Health Awareness and Education

4. Post-Secondary Affordability & Local Options

We are very excited about the response of the Vital Conversation.

Vital conversation really engaged young people and their voices are being heard. At the same time youth are building skills and networks. We do better when we hear from a diverse group of people. We are happy to be a part of the conversation.” Miranda Rowson, RBC Branch Manager

We want to Thanks Community Foundations of Canada and RBC for thisunique opportunity to engage youth in looking to the future of our community and building future leaders.

The Vital Conversation aligns with WCF’s work by “building community” for an important sector of our community. Our youth are our future but they often lack the platform to have their voice heard. By seeking their feedback through a Vital Conversation, we have a better understanding of what our community should look like to thrive not only today, but well into the future. Rob Unruh, WCF Vice-President.

We encourage the dialogue to continue; young leaders work together, partner with community leaders and be an advocate to make change happen in our community. We look forward to seeing how today’s conversation will impact our community as power is given to young leaders making positive social or environmental change in our community.



Stories coming soon!


2023 Community Grant Applications

Deadline: April 15, 2023

2023 Gordon Wiebe Award Applications

Deadline: February 28, 2023