Markham Vets Club celebrates OTF Grant achievements

Every year, hundreds of community organizations apply to the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF), an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations. The foundation’s mission is to help worthy community organizations around the province complete projects that build healthy and vibrant communities with the help of these grants.

The Markham and District Veterans ‘ Association (MDVA) received two such grants in late 2022, consisting of a $41,700 Resilient Communities Fund grant given in late 2022 to purchase equipment and appliances for MDVA’s Hall and kitchen facilities, and a $100,000 Capital grant awarded to make accessibility and storage upgrades to the building.

The Resilient Communities Fund grant was provided to bring in structure and program consultants to look at MDVA’s century-old building’s existing upper hall facilities and see how the space could be better used. Funds from the grant were also earmarked to purchase PPE, new kitchen appliances, and make any needed electrical and plumbing upgrades, as well as help with the construction of counters meant for part of a new lunch cafe being setup to run out of the MDVA.

The second grant, a $100,000 Capital grant, was to enabled the MDVA to make needed renovations to provide visitors with an accessible washroom facility in the upper level of the Hall. The grant was also used for buying a portable lift and making minor renovations to accommodate the lift. The Hall is used by a variety of community groups for meetings, celebrations and fundraisers and allow people of all abilities to be able to access both levels of the hall.

Markham-Stouffville MPP, Paul Calandra was on hand recently, at a project recognition event, along with MDVA members, media and OTF representative Yash Kapur, to celebrate the completion of the work enabled by the grants.

(l-r) MPP Paul Calandra, OTF rep. Yash Kapur, Markham Ward 4 Councillor Karen Rea, MDVA President David Smith at the new lunch cafe counter.

“The transformative impact of the Ontario Trillium Foundation grants on the Markham District Veterans Association showcases the power of community investment,” said Calandra. “These grants have not only revitalized historical spaces but have also reinforced the MDVA’s commitment to inclusivity and service to the community.”

“The impact of this Ontario Trillium Foundation grant cannot be overstated,” added David Smith, President of the Markham District Veterans Association. “This grant has allowed needed renovations to be made. Our hall is now completely accessible and we can now accommodate everyone with mobility issues and serve our community better.”

These additions make the MDVA more useable to members and busy people needing a quick bite on the go at lunch, but also ensure the halls in the building are more viable choices for community group rentals.

For more information on the MDVA or hall rental, visit

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