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Terence Haight Financial Assistance Program

2024 Applications Now Closed! Stay Tuned for 2025!

Application intakes for 2025 will open September 2024 and will close December 2024.

The Gravenhurst Terence Haight Financial Assistance Program was established by Council to provide limited financial assistance to community groups and organizations within the municipality to assist with activities, special events or with an improvement to the organization's existing assets. This support is in recognition of the value of these organizations to the well-being of the community!

The following is the Eligibility Criteria for the non-for-profit community groups and organizations interested in applying to the program:
- offer a service, program, or activity that benefits Gravenhurst's residents
- Demonstrates financial support from other sources (Ex ticket sales, membership fees, provincial/federal funding or community donations)
- Clearly demonstrates the need for the specific request. each request must identify a specific define benefit and outcome
- Have accountability for public funds and organizational transparency demonstrated in a manner that is satisfactory to the Terence Haight Financial Assistance Committee.

Take a look at the Terence Haight Assistance Program's guidelines for more information.

Black and White Photo of Terence Haight

Terence Haight was born on November 5, 1920 in Peterborough, ON.

His father, a newspaper pressman, moved the young family to Bracebridge for the beauty of the area and clean air. Terence, along with his 3 brothers and 1 sister, loved the outdoors, swimming, canoeing, snowshoeing and skiing. They also helped tend their father's vegetable garden, hunted and trapped.

As a young man, Mr. Haight ran a bakery in nearby Bracebridge, and the tourist establishments in Gravenhurst always gave him plenty of business. Eventually marrying a Gravenhurst woman named Audrey McDonald, they moved 2 hours away to North Bay, ON where he worked in a hardware store. After Audrey died, Terence relocated to New Liskeard, ON.

Mr. Haight was a private, yet very much community-minded person. Although he helped many causes in his community of New Liskeard, ON, he did not seek attention, preferring to donate in a discreet, charitable manner.

What his friends & neighbours did not know was that he had invested in mining stocks and quietly accumulated a small fortune. To everyone's surprise, he donated over $ 1 million dollars to the Town of Gravenhurst.

Why did Terence Haight choose Gravenhurst?

We know he had a great appreciation for Gravenhurst during the time he ran his bakery, but more importantly his wife Audrey McDonald grew up in the Town at 22 David St. East. She was the daughter of John McDonald, a lumberman. Terence chose to be laid to rest in Gravenhurst. He was buried beside his wife in Lakeview Cemetery, December 2008.

"Terrence Haight was a leader and a visionary and would rather have seen his lifetime savings used for a long term vision rather than just providing a short term solution." - Pastor, Father John Lemire.

In October 2011, a public dedication ceremony took place in Gravenhurst honouring Mr. Haight's memory and contributions to the Town. Additional to the 1 million dollar gift to the Town, he left portions to a hospital, the Salvation Army and his parish.

After a number of suggestions from Gravenhurst residents as to how the Town should manage the financial gift left by Mr. Haight, Council decided on establishing an annual Grant program in which local organizations could put forth applications. This grant is known today as The Terence Haight Financial Assistance Program.

Sources: Adrian Morrow, The Globe and Mail August. 12, 2011; Jessica Hume, National Post, August 8, 2011; Rotary Club of Gravenhurst; Town of Gravenhurst

Resource: About Terence Haight (PDF)

 Applications for 2024 grants are now being accepted!

You can work with the Town Economic Development Division in submitted your application. 
Your Application will then be taken to the Community Grants Committee for review and recommended allocation of funds, which will then be approved by Council.

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