Behind every Launch Pad Coaching Grant is a passionate group of volunteers and staff dedicated to finding creative solutions to help them save and renew a special community place. Learn more about our alumni below.
Watson’s Mill is a museum and historical centre that celebrates Manotick and its history. The building is an 1860s grist and flour mill built by Moss Kent Dickinson and Joseph Currier, who together founded the town of Manotick. Today Watson’s Mill continues to grind flour while helping visitors explore the past and conserving the site for the future.
Our coaches worked with the team at Watson’s Mill Manotick Inc. to explore digital programming avenues for the museum and historical centre.Watson's Mill Manotick Inc.
Historic Joy Kogawa House
Photo credit: Kate Metten
The Historic Joy Kogawa House is the childhood home of Canadian author Joy Kogawa. Joy and her family lived in the house until 1942, when they were sent to an internment camp along with thousands of other Canadians of Japanese descent. Now used as a site for author residencies and literary events, the house stands as a historical reminder of the internment experience of Japanese Canadians during the Second World War, and by extension, to the experiences of diverse cultural and ethnic groups within Canadian society.
The Historic Joy Kogawa House Society was established in 2007 to reflect and build upon Joy Kogawa’s experience as a writer and formerly interned Canadian of Japanese heritage through education and an artists’ residency that engage literary and local communities. To date we have hosted more than 40 writers-in-residence plus events and educational tours for youth, children, and the general public.
Our coaches worked with the Historic Joy Kogawa House Society team to lay the foundation for an upcoming capital campaign for restoration of this historic site. Together they identified roles and responsibilities for staff, volunteers, and champions, discussed and prioritized strategies and funders, and explored key messages for the case for support.Historic Joy Kogawa House Society
Trethewey House Heritage Site
Trethewey House was built in 1919 for B.C. lumber baron “J.O.” Trethewey. The craftsman style bungalow is constructed using primarily local materials, including old‐growth fir processed at the Trethewey mill, and Clayburn bricks and tile, crafted from clay mined on Sumas Mountain. The House has been restored to c.1925 and was designated a municipal heritage site in 1983. The Heritage Site also houses the Upper Sumas BC Electric Train Station, the Sylvia Pincot Heritage Habitat Garden and two replica buildings.
Heritage Abbotsford is a charitable organization which collects, records, preserves and shares the stories of Abbotsford. Now in its 51st year of operations, the Society's team continues to work towards the organization being the recognized organization for Abbotsford heritage expertise and consultation. We develop and deliver festivals, events, and curriculum‐linked programs in schools, museums, and other spaces which are accessible to the general public.
Our coaches worked with the team at Heritage Abbotsford to develop a business plan that will increase revenue generation opportunities for the heritage site.
"While I’ve felt confident in our projects before, I feel more confident in my abilities to pull things off when I can dismantle things into their most minute parts and then reassemble. The Launch Pad grant has enabled me to do just that, and I’ve already applied some of what I’ve learned to other projects. This was a fascinating process, and I am deeply thankful for the opportunity!"
-Christina Reid, Executive Director, Heritage Abbotsford Society
Hutchison House Museum
Hutchison House is one of the oldest limestone houses in Peterborough. It was built by volunteers in 1837 for Dr. John Hutchison, the city's first resident physician. This living history museum offers a glimpse into 19th century life in Upper Canada.
As one of Ontario's oldest historical societies, the Peterborough Historical Society has played a lead role in preserving and promoting Peterborough's rich architectural and cultural history. Our goal is to generate wider public interest in local history.
Our coaches worked with the team at Hutchison House to explore digital experiences and platforms as new sources of revenue generation for this historical house museum.Peterborough Historical Society
Parkwood National Historic Site
Parkwood Estate National Historic Site is the family home of autobaron R.S. McLaughlin, founder of General Motors of Canada, and Canadian philanthropist. The estate foot print is a 55 room furnished mansion, with 12 acres of landscape grounds, representing the advent of Canadian landscape architecture and ornamental gardens.
Inspired by early 20th century Beaux‐Arts design, the mansion was built between 1915‐17, shortly before McLaughlin became founding President of General Motors of Canada. The design of Parkwood’s architecture, interior decorations and garden landscapes are all imbued with a 20th century style and a distinctly North American sensibility, including some outstanding examples of art moderne. The site is interpreted as if the family have just stepped away, with a full complement of a collection, left in situ, bolstered by a private archives with approx. 15,000 items, including family home movies, correspondence, and journals.
Our coaches worked with the team at the Parkwood Foundation museum to help frame a storytelling campaign over the next five years. Together they identified goals, target audiences, and communication strategies.
"Launch Pad challenged us to be creative and be fearless... Professional, approachable, and thoroughly available to the Parkwood gang, the Trust team have pushed us, and continue to inspire us, to use our storytelling to generate and offer stellar interpretive programming!"
-Samantha George, Curator, Parkwood Foundation
Dalnavert Museum and Visitors' Centre
Dalnavert is the 1895 home of Sir Hugh John Macdonald, Premier of Manitoba and son of Sir John A. Macdonald, located in the heart of Winnipeg’s downtown. One of the finest examples of Queen Anne Revival architecture in Western Canada, it has been restored to how it looked in 1895 and is fully furnished with a large collection of decorative arts. This unique museum features a “day in the life” feel as it transports visitors back in time to the 19th century the second they step inside.
Friends of Dalnavert Museum is the registered charity that owns and operates Dalnavert Museum and Visitors’ Centre, located at 61 Carlton St. in downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba. As a part of our mission, we are committed to: preserving and maintaining the museum's buildings, grounds, and collection; presenting engaging programs and exhibits that interpret the history of the house and Winnipeg's early heritage for visitors; and developing partnerships and programming that will make Dalnavert a cultural centre for city residents.
Our coaches worked with the team at Dalnavert Museum and Visitors’ Centre to explore alternate delivery models for current day programming, their capacity for content creation and digital communications and revenue generation.Friends of Dalnavert Museum Inc.
Beaubears Island National Historic Site
The Beaubears Island Shipbuilding National Historic Site of Canada, J. Leonard O’Brien Memorial is the only known, extensive, undisturbed archaeological site associated with the national significance of the 19th century wooden shipbuilding industry in New Brunswick.
The Boishebert National Historic Site of Canada acknowledges that the Acadians sought refuge on Wilson’s Point from 1756 to 1760, and that Beaubears Island was an integral, functional component of this settlement which importantly relates to the significance of the Acadian experience.
The National Trust worked with the Friends of Beaubears Island to build on the success of their growing programs at the two National Historic Sites under their care.The Friends of Beaubears Island
The John Street Roundhouse
The John Street Roundhouse was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990, notable as “the best surviving example of a roundhouse in Canada”. Built from 1929-1931, this building was a Canadian Pacific maintenance facility where steam- and later diesel-powered locomotives were cleaned and maintained. Hundreds of people worked 24 hours a day to give these locomotives the “John Street polish”.
Inside, the museum interprets Toronto’s railway history through interact exhibits, simulators and seasonal tours. The museum celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2020.
The Toronto Railway Historical Association operates the Toronto Railway Museum inside the historic John Street Roundhouse.
The National Trust worked with the Toronto Railway Museum to develop a sponsorship strategy and key messages they can use to create unique and successful pitches for corporate support for the Museum located in the heart of downtown Toronto.
“Our coaches Nhanci and Alison were immensely helpful in providing us with their expertise on sponsorship. As a small team of staff and volunteers, we benefited tremendously from the resources developed through our coaching sessions. These sessions gave us concrete steps to move forward with our sponsorship strategy. We are looking forward to putting these lessons into practice.”
-Kelly Burwash, Toronto Railway Museum
Rivers Train Station
Built in 1917 by Grand Trunk Pacific Railway, the Rivers Train Station is a crucial link in the transcontinental railway system of Canada. The station sits on the CN Rail main line and is currently sub leased by VIA Rail. As the railroad connects the east to the west, all commodities that are shipped via rail pass along here. VIA Rail has over 85,000 passengers a year pass by the station and more than 35 freight trains a day travel the line.
The Rivers Train Station Restoration Committee, formed in 2006, is working to restore the train station by making it a viable property for both heritage preservation and economic development. Plans for the station include commercial space, a museum/tourist information area, and a centre for culture and the arts.
The National Trust worked with the Rivers Train Station Restoration Committee to develop a Marketing and Communications plan to identify the main audience and key messages for the Rivers Train Station Restoration plan.Rivers Train Station Restoration Committee
LePage Park is located in the heart of downtown Whitehorse and is home to three municipally designated historic buildings, the Donnenworth, Smith, and Captain Martin Houses, built between 1896 and 1939. Today these three former residences, and the small public park they surround, act as office and community spaces for a wide variety of non-profit organizations and public events, and offer a glimpse of the former residential nature of the area.
Founded in 1977, the Yukon Historical & Museums Association (YHMA) is a charitable organization dedicated to strengthening heritage in the Yukon through leadership, advocacy, and education. YHMA operates out of the historic Donnenworth House, built between 1896 and 1905.
The National Trust worked with the Yukon Historical and Museums Association to develop a fundraising strategy to improve the financial sustainability of LePage Park in downtown Whitehorse.Yukon Historical & Museums Association
The Khyber Building
The Turret Arts Space will be a multipurpose arts space in the heart of downtown Halifax. 1588 Barrignton Street, known as "The Khyber Building" was built in 1888 as the Church of England Institute. Since the 1970s, the building has been a community hub--housing a variety of arts and LGBTQ+ organizations such as the Atlantic Film Coop, Wormwood Cinema, The Turret Club and the Gay Alliance for Equality, and the Khyber Arts Society.
In 2015, the 1588 Barrington Building Preservation Society was formed with the intention of purchasing the Khyber Building from the Halifax Regional Municipality, renovating the building and creating an arts space.
The National Trust worked with the 1588 Barrington Building Preservation Society to identify priorities and strategies to build capacity as they prepare for a private sector capital campaign.
"Launch Pad helped refine our thinking on the messaging of our project and fundraising approach! Nhanci and Alison helped us build confidence to qualify and approach potential donors."
-Emily Davidson, 1588 Barrington Building Preservation Society
J.B. Fletcher Museum
Ainsworth Hot Springs, BC
The J.B. Fletcher Store, built in 1896, is a unique piece of BC history. Although there are many towns in the interior where commercial buildings and general stores from the 1890's have survived, there are only a handful with unaltered interiors. Most of the artifacts in the store are from its years of operation. J.B. Fletcher managed the store from 1913 until 1929 when he purchased it. He ran the store until 1972 and was known fondly as Pop Fletcher to those who frequented his mercantile.
His daughter, Mavis Stainer, created the J.B. Fletcher Restoration Society and spearheaded the group to preserve the building as a museum. Recently, the J.B. Fletcher Store has undergone a massive restoration thanks to the Built Heritage Grants provided by the Columbia Basin Trust through Heritage BC. Structural issues have been addressed and the museum is being returned to its original state. A visit to the store is truly a step back in time.
The J.B. Fletcher Store also proudly hosts a business, White Raven Emporium, and many local artisans. There are spectacular, unique handmade wares for sale in a variety of mediums.
The National Trust worked with the J.B. Fletcher Restoration Society to find ways to make the museum financially sustainable. Our coaches are helping the team at the museum establish an operating budget, explore merchandising options in their gift shop, and discover new revenue streams.J.B. Fletcher Restoration Society
Historic Markerville, including the Creamery Museum, Fensala Hall, Markerville Lutheran Church, The Buttermaker's House, and Tindastoll Cemetery
Historic Markerville is traditionally Icelandic and known for its historic sites, quaint, friendly atmosphere, family friendly events & the Kaffistofa (coffee shop) which serves Icelandic specialties & ice cream.
Visitors from across Alberta, Canada & Iceland enjoy the culture & history that the Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society has preserved.
Established in 1974, the Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society began its mission to preserve history in the tiny hamlet of Markerville (30 residents).
After the collaborative restoration completion of the Stephansson House Historic Site (Provincially owned & operated), the Society began its restoration of the Markerville Creamery in 1984, followed by Fensala Hall in 2006, Markerville Lutheran Church in 2009 & the pending restoration of the Buttermaker’s House to begin in the fall of 2019.
The National Trust worked with the Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society as they embarked on a capital campaign to raise funds to restore the Buttermaker’s House. Our coaches provided the team with a better understanding of how to choose strategies, a sequence of events, and key messages for their capital campaign.Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society
Red Brick Row
Sydney Mines, NS
The Red Brick Row in Sydney Mines NS is one of the earliest surviving examples of worker housing in Canada, dating back to the early days of coal mining operations in Cape Breton.
The Sydney Architectural Conservation Society (SACS) in partnership with the Red Brick Row Development company and the Cape Breton University Tompkins Institute, are seeking to conserve the last three end units of Red Brick Row and see them rehabilitated in a way that brings the rich heritage and history to life while engaging the community it's use.
The National Trust worked with the Sydney Architectural Conservation Society and its partners to assess rehabilitation options that will best help ensure a sustainable future for the Red Brick Row.Sydney Architectural Conservation Society
St Joseph’s Kingsbridge Community (Kingsbridge) is a registered charity with the goal of providing a large multi use facility for the residents and visitors of rural Southwestern Ontario.
In 2012, the closure of the century old, 15,000+ square foot gothic revival St. Joseph's church left a large vibrant rural community without a venue to meet. Kingsbridge was established to purchase the former church and rectory, and to restore the historical buildings. The (renamed) Kingsbridge Centre is now a cultural centre with a community based agenda, and is used for community gatherings, performance opportunities, rural education, and rental options.
The National Trust is helping the team at the St. Joseph’s Kingsbridge Community Centre lay the foundation for a fundraising program. Together, they will also identify diversified revenue streams to support the Centre’s programming and develop messaging that tells their story and engages potential funders and donors.St. Joseph's Kingsbridge Community
Red Deer, AB
The Cronquist House is one of the few remaining buildings in Red Deer dating from the early 1900’s when the district was settled. The house was built by the Cronquist family who were Swedish immigrants and in its day it was a large, luxurious home with a beautiful view of the Red Deer River valley.
Now run by the Red Deer Cultural Heritage Society, the house may be rented for private functions such as retreats, small weddings, business meetings, or family parties and the public is invited to enjoy the house over light lunches or afternoon tea and dessert during July and August.
The National Trust’s coaches helped the team at the Red Deer Cultural Heritage Society identify strategies to generate greater awareness of the Cronquist House, and develop new strategies to increase traffic to the house in general.Red Deer Cultural Heritage Society
Acton Town Hall Centre
Heritage Acton was formed as a charitable corporation by a group of local citizens on July 26, 1983. The goal being to promote, facilitate and manage the restoration of buildings of historical importance in the town of Acton. In particular, to manage the restoration of the Acton Town Hall located at the corner of Bower Avenue and Willow Street, in the former town of Acton. The current board consists of 25 volunteers supported by friends of Heritage Acton.
The National Trust worked with Heritage Acton to identify priorities and strategies to launch a new fundraising campaign to take on important capital projects.
“The knowledge we gained through our Launch Pad Coaching Grant has been a game changer for our campaign to fund ongoing restoration of our Victorian era Town Hall in Acton, Ontario. Thank you!”
– Peter E. Rowe, Vice-Chair, Heritage Acton
Colony of Avalon
Established in 1621 by Sir George Calvert (the First Lord Baltimore), the Colony of Avalon is widely recognized as the best preserved early English colonial site in North America. Today, on-going work at the Colony is changing the way we understand that past. Discoveries made through excavations by our archaeological team have revealed that the colony was a place where Indigenous people had an amicable relationship with early European fishermen 500 years ago, where religious toleration was first introduced to North America, and where almost 400 years ago female entrepreneurs managed a vibrant transatlantic trade. The Colony of Avalon is one of the premier tourist attractions in Newfoundland & Labrador, if not in all of Canada, and is visited by thousands of people every year.
The National Trust’s coaches helped the Colony of Avalon Foundation by reviewing their retail operations and providing feedback on areas of improvement.
"Our Launch Pad coaching resulted in a series of actionable and impactful recommendations. While our shop is still a work in progress, it is closer to a professional retail operation and the Launch Pad grant played an important role in that progress."
-Coleen Crane, Executive Director, Colony of Avalon Foundation
Church of Scotland at Chatham, Lower Canada
Photo: Brent Reilly
St Mungo's was built as a Church of Scotland in 1836 by Scottish stonemasons who worked on the Ottawa River canals. Today, it is one of the oldest Protestant churches in Quebec, and has been largely restored by the congregation with the financial assistance of the Patrimoine religieux du Québec.
The Friends of St Mungo's was created several years ago to bring together people interested in preserving the historic church and site.
The National Trust worked with the Friends of St Mungo’s to develop a strategy to build on their existing programming and that will contribute to a sustainable future for this charming site.St Mungo's United Church
Knaut-Rhuland House Museum National Historic Site
The Lunenburg Heritage Society formed in 1972 with a mission to preserve and promote Lunenburg’s unique history and settlement story. Today, our registered charity owns the Knaut-Rhuland House Museum National Historic Site, and Lunenburg's Heritage Bandstand, and strives to celebrate and protect Lunenburg's architecture and built heritage.
The National Trust worked with the Lunenburg Heritage Society to put in place a regeneration plan for the Knaut-Rhuland House National Historic Site.Lunenburg Heritage Society
Photo: George Webber
Lougheed House, Calgary Beltline's hub of cultural happenings & programs, is a National and Provincial Historic Site, Museum and restaurant, all located on our original 2.8 acres. This 14,000 square-foot sandstone prairie mansion was built in 1891 by Senator James Lougheed and his wife Lady Isabella. It remains one of the finest public examples of a restored sandstone home in Canada. It has been a social, entertainment and political hub in Calgary for over 126 years. The site can be rented for special events, weddings, parties and more.
Through the Launch Pad program, National Trust coaches worked with staff at the Lougheed House to develop sponsorship strategies to help the organization diversify its revenue base.
“Some of the things that were very beneficial for us that are perhaps more difficult to report on include the very practical, nuts and bolts, advice about building sponsorship packages that get attention. Also helpful were your outside eyes that were able to see things from a different perspective.”
-Sean French, Lougheed House
Central Fire Hall
The Central Station Education Initiative in Welland was embarking on a major fundraising campaign to restore and transform our historic fire hall into a financially self-sustaining, multi-use facility that will include a portion open to the public honoring the story of the firefighters who lived and worked in the building.
They're a small volunteer group with lots of energy and drive.
The National Trust worked with the Central Station Education Initiative to develop a fundraising plan to reach their financial targets, and strategies to set it in motion.Central Station Education Initiative
The Diefenbunker, Canada’s Cold War Museum in Carp, Ontario are developing a sponsorship program. Our coaches led two training sessions that got their staff thinking about the best opportunities they have to offer sponsors and how to target sponsors that are the right fit for them.
“It was such a terrific experience. Their coaches worked with us one-on-one and truly listened to our needs and the needs of the organization.”
-Twitter Post, Diefenbunker
North Highlands Museum and Culture Centre in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia wanted to build a marketing plan to expand and engage new audiences in their community and in the tourism sector. Our coaches helped them to understand the key ingredients of a good marketing plan, and how to tailor one to their target audiences.
“We were very excited to have been selected as a participant for this initiative and the benefits to our organization will be felt for years to come. The team at the National Trust put together a concise plan to help us attain our objectives and followed us every step of the way. This was a truly enriching experience for our organisation; the support and coaching by the National Trust team was exemplary.”
– Emmanuel Comtois, Treasurer of the North Highlands Community Museum and Culture Centre
The Grand Theatre
Indian Head, SK
The Grand Theatre in Indian Head, Saskatchewan faces the same challenges many of us working in the heritage sector experience – how to tell your stories effectively to targeted audiences, using the power of social media with a volunteer team. Our coaches helped them to focus on their communications assets and develop techniques to tell their story through social media channels.
“The Launch Pad Coaching Grant was a great experience for our board members involved in communications at the Grand Theatre in Indian Head. The National Trust team reviewed our communications products and gave us the advice and encouragement to become effective story tellers about our building, our volunteers and our community.”
– Bruce Neil, Grand Theatre
Doucet Hennessy House
The team at the Doucet-Hennessy House in Bathurst, New Brunswick have big plans and great ideas to rehabilitate this historic house into a multi-purpose facility. Our coaches are helped them study the feasibility of possible uses that meet their social enterprise’s goals, and that will be the basis of a sustainable business plan.Association Maison Doucet Hennessy House Association Inc.
Belle Vue House
After the cold, devastating War of 1812, the promise of Belle Vue gave us hope by its grandeur build and working farmland. Today, Belle Vue inspires future generations by connecting people, preserving national heritage and fueling the creative vitality of our communities!
Through collaboration and partnerships, The Amherstburg Belle Vue Conservancy is dedicated to raising funds for Phase 1 of restoration for the Belle Vue House to secure a new roof, windows, gutters and foundation work. These core repairs are of absolute urgency in order to stabilize the house after years of severe neglect. The Conservancy is proud to announce that tender documents for a new roof and architectural assessment of the windows are well underway and work is expected to begin in 2018.
The National Trust worked with the Belle Vue House team to identify strategies for their corporate sponsorship campaign, develop messaging for the campaign materials and provide training for key volunteers in connecting with potential sponsors.
"Both Nhanci and Alison clearly brought a wealth of experience, passion and great ideas to the project. The entire process including the final report was outstanding! We now have concrete material to work with and share in our endeavour to open Belle Vue’s Doors again!! We want to thank the National Trust, Nhanci and Alison for a wonderful experience and all of their support!"
-Anne Rota, Manager of Tourism and Culture, Town of Amherstburg; Linda Jackson, Chairperson of Outreach, Belle Vue Conservancy; and Jennifer Ibrahim, Tourism Coordinator, Town of Amherstburg
Crowsnest Museum and Alberta Provincial Police Barracks
The Crowsnest Museum and Alberta Provincial Police Barracks are integral parts of the heritage offerings of the Crowsnest Pass. They are operated by the Crowsnest Historical Society. Extensive indoor and outdoor exhibits showcase the social, architectural and industrial history of the Crowsnest Pass, and the Museum also hosts the region’s historical archives.
The National Trust worked with the Crowsnest Historical Society’s team to develop key messages for storytelling, branding, and identifying priority marketing strategies to increase audience engagement. Together, they identified strategies to focus the team on top priorities and increase organizational readiness to deliver.
"The Launch Pad Sessions were a great benefit to our organization. The facilitators took the time to find out what was important to us and where they could help the most. They met us where we were at and were invested in our organization growing and succeeding."
-Chris Matthews, Executive Director, Crowsnest Museum & Archives
Prime Ministers Row will offer the literal and figurative meeting point between those who shaped Canada’s first 150 years and those who will shape Canada’s next 150 years. This initiative will leverage the unique and extraordinary built heritage assets located along Ottawa’s Laurier Avenue East – historically home to multiple Prime Ministers and Fathers of Confederation – in order to create Canada’s first street museum in the heart of the Nation’s Capital. This will be an innovative, participation-oriented, multi-block, multi-media, outdoor cultural space designed to encourage reflection on questions of governance, identity, culture, values and history.
The National Trust worked with the Prime Ministers’ Row team to finalize and begin implementing their business plan to commemorate the lives and legacies of former Prime Ministers and celebrate Canadian leadership in governance and democracy, including through the creation of Canada’s first Street Museum. Together, they identified priority actions to engage with the numerous partners that will make this innovative idea a reality.Prime Ministers’ Row
St. Andrews, NB
The Van Horne Estate on Ministers Island offers visitors one of the foremost cultural, heritage and environmental tourism destination in the Charlotte Coastal Region of the Bay of Fundy of New Brunswick. Lying in the shores of Passamaquoddy Bay near St. Andrews, New Brunswick, this 500-acre island can be reached by driving over the seafloor. Sir William’s vast house, his equally large barn and his bathhouse/artist’s hideaway are on view, as are the beautiful carriage lanes through the woods and fields.
The National Trust worked with the Ministers Island team to develop key messages for storytelling and branding and identify priority social media strategies to increase audience engagement.
"Working with the coaching partners was a fantastic experience. They provided through insight into strategic initiatives that are going to prove beneficial to Ministers Island…. I would recommend this training to any group looking to improve their presence on social media."
-Paul Nopper, Operations Manager, Ministers Island