The donations by Royal Banks Greg Newton and Cecilia Lawson, have kick-started the Whistler Employee Fund. This week the CFOW has also received the first payments to the Whistler Employee Fund from employees of Pique Publishing. Employees of Race and Company have also signed on to the program.
The program provides an opportunity for community minded employees to support the community where they live and raise their families. According to Nancy Wilhelm-Morden, CFOW president, "the employee deduction program is an innovative way to benefit programs throughout the Sea to Sky corridor."
Since the fall of 2004, CFOW board members and volunteers have been making presentations to employers throughout Whistler. As part of the new program, employees have an opportunity to designate their donation to the Whistler Employee Fund, the Pemberton Employee Fund or the Squamish Employee Fund. Each of the new employee endowment funds will have an advisory committee which will provide recommendations into how the income generated is granted in each community. According to John Nadeau, Chair of the Program Committee, "The process is quite simple. Employees sign on through their employer and select a specific amount to be automatically deducted from their pay each pay period."
Founded in 1999, the Community Foundation of Whistler currently manages 20 funds which total over $2.1 million. The investment earnings on funds donated by residents, businesses and other charities are directed to projects that help improve the quality of community life in the Sea to Sky corridor.