The North Thompson Communities Foundation have announced that Jessica Sterling is the December 2021 recipient of the Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary. Sterling is a Barriere Secondary alumni, and is currently attending North Island College in Port Alberni where she has just completed her first term in the Furniture Design and Joinery Program. She says her plan is to continue her studies at BCIT after completing her present program, and that she will be working towards becoming a Joinery apprentice. Pictured is North Thompson Communities Foundation Vice President Louise Lodge presenting the bursary to Sterling last December. (NTCF photo)

The North Thompson Communities Foundation have announced that Jessica Sterling is the December 2021 recipient of the Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary. Sterling is a Barriere Secondary alumni, and is currently attending North Island College in Port Alberni where she has just completed her first term in the Furniture Design and Joinery Program. She says her plan is to continue her studies at BCIT after completing her present program, and that she will be working towards becoming a Joinery apprentice. Pictured is North Thompson Communities Foundation Vice President Louise Lodge presenting the bursary to Sterling last December. (NTCF photo)

North Thompson Communities Foundation grows ongoing legacy for valley

2021 Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary presented to Barriere Secondary alumni

The North Thompson Communities Foundation (NTCF) has been supporting communities from Blue River to McLure since 2005. Sandy Wetterstrom is the grant chairperson for the foundation, and was recently interviewed by the Star/Journal.

“Through the interest earned from donations to the foundation we award a variety of social programs and community organizations during our annual spring granting cycle.”

She explains one of the grants they annually present is the Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary created in Donnie’s memory by his mother Jo’Ann Kivari in 2014.

The most recent recipient of the Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary is Jessica Sterling who is a Barriere Secondary alumni and is currently enrolled in the Furniture Design and Joinery Program at North Island College in Port Alberni.

Upon completion, Sterling plans to attend BCIT to become a joinery apprentice. Ultimately she would like to come back to the valley and open an artisan wood working shop to create custom pieces, and would also like to one day offer wood working courses for community members.

Sterling has expressed an interest in participating in the upcoming revitalization efforts of the Barriere downtown core using the skills she is now acquiring. She is also an active community volunteer, and in 2021 worked on solar panel light and outlet installations at the North Thompson Fall Fair facility in Barriere, and also participating in the building of the timber structure over the Yellowhead 4-H Club livestock weigh scale beside the North Thompson Agriplex.

The Donnie Nicholson Memorial Trades Bursary Fund is open to applicants 18-29 years old, who reside in the North Thompson (Blue River to McLure) who will be entering a post secondary institution for the trades and/or technology. The successful applicant will receive a $1500 bursary after proof of enrollment and satisfactory completion of the first half of the course. Readers can find more information about this bursary by going to: http://www.ntcommunitiesfoundation.com/ and clicking on Bursary.

Wetterstrom says it is most fulfilling to see young people from valley communities benefiting from the grants and bursaries managed by the foundation, which has all been made possible thanks to generous donors who have stepped forward to create these ongoing legacies. She adds the foundation is a growing organization, and welcome any and all inquiries in regards to creating a legacy.

“We would also like to extend a welcome to new residents and businesses in the North Thompson Valley, and invite anyone looking for a group to meaningfully volunteer their time and skills to please consider the foundation,” said Wetterstrom, “We’d like to hear from those interested in our organization, and are always happy to take the time to explain what we do, how we do it, and how others can become involved. Our vision is to connect caring communities in the North Thompson.”

Wetterstrom adds they would especially love to hear from anyone who has computer skills, social media or strong communication skills, and an interest in the future of the North Thompson Valley from Blue River to McLure. Please email your inquiries to: ntcommunitiesfoundation@gmail.com

Anyone interested in creating a legacy for their own family with the North Thompson Communities Foundation is asked to please contact Cheryl Thomas for further information by calling 250-674-3260.

Learn More about the North Thompson Communities Foundation by going to: http://www.ntcommunitiesfoundation.com/

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news@starjournal.net

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