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Seeds of Hope in Bloom: Burry Heights Camp and Retreat Centre

Nestled in the beautiful forests of Salmonier Line, Newfoundland and Labrador, Burry Heights Camp and Retreat Centre encourages attendees to enjoy and engage with the outdoors, all while strengthening their spirituality.  Needing a hand in getting the space to reach its potential, Burry Heights turned to the Foundation’s Seeds of Hope grant program for support.  “When we first heard about Seeds of Hope funding, it inspired us!” explains Kass Lynch of Burry Heights Camp and Retreat Centre, “our property had trails cut out decades ago, but they weren’t kept up.” The Foundation’s Seeds of Hope has been able to aid multiple endeavors, including rejuvenating some of their outdoor spaces.

Becoming Accessible

Getting young people to go outside and explore their surroundings is part of what they offer in the summer. “A prominent part of our summer camping program involves getting campers out exploring and appreciating nature,” says Lynch. Initially, their sports field was not in great condition, requiring extensive maintenance, including the need to fill in pits in the ground annually. Buoyed by their Seeds of Hope grant, they were able to soil, relevel, and reseed the field and surrounding areas. The improved grounds were not limited to the field, but also other spaces to help Burry Heights meet their accessibility goals. They were able to make the trails that could accommodate those with varying levels of ability, including those who use wheelchairs. “Seeds of Hope funding gave us the financial support we needed to tackle the trails we had, and even create new ones which are safe for nature explorers of all ages,” says Lynch. It was important to them to offer safe options for those with mobility issues, for those who required a simpler path, as well as those who wanted to challenge themselves.

Room to Grow (with God)

Having outgrown their previous chapel, the grant supported them in their need for a bigger space to accommodate and reach a more people. “We were proud to say we outgrew our small outdoor chapel!” Lynch says, “our most recent grant from Seeds of Hope allowed us to complete our outdoor chapel, with stage and podium, which can easily fit 100 individuals!” It was also a priority for Burry Heights to make sure that the chapel could be accessible, particularly for those with motorized wheelchairs. They were able to level the ground and compact the gravel, ensuring fewer barriers for those who wanted to join them in worship. Located in a beautiful spot on a beach overlooking the water, more people can now gather and grow their relationship with God.

Plant Your Own Seeds of Hope… and Watch Them Bloom!

The United Church of Canada Foundation offers a wide variety of different grant opportunities for United Church of Canada organizations and individuals to bring life to the mission and values of the United Church. These grants are a part of the stewardship of our trusts and endowments, made possible by the generosity of donors to the Foundation and the United Church of Canada. The Seeds of Hope granting program awards approximately one million dollars each year to support innovative United Church projects. Our Fall granting round is now open, and we are accepting applications until October 15. How will a funding boost from Seeds of Hope help your project take flight?
 
We are always available if you need help completing your application, or have any further questions. Please email us at grants@united-church.ca .

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