Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta Receives $25K Grant from Canada Post Community Foundation to Bolster Mental Health Programs

In photo: (Left: Nanase Tonda, Executive Director, Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta, Middle: Sundas Shamshad, Interim Executive Director, Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta, Right: Joni Lavers, Local Area Superintendent of Operations, Canada Post, Fort McMurray Main PO)


[Fort McMurray, September 20] — Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta (Girls Inc.), an organization committed to inspiring all girls to be strong, smart and bold, is thrilled to announce that it has been awarded a generous grant of $25,000 from the Canada Post Community Foundation. 

This grant is part of the Foundation’s mission to enhance the lives of Canadian children and youth, and it will be allocated to support Girls Inc.’s mental health programs, including ‘Power of Stories’ and ‘Mind + Body.’

In a remarkable display of support for youth-focused initiatives, the Canada Post Community Foundation has disbursed a total of approximately $1.2 million in grants this year to 84 organizations across the country. These grants are carefully raised and allocated within each province and territory, emphasizing the foundation’s commitment to making a positive impact on young Canadians’ lives.

“Canada Post is proud to help organizations and projects that make a difference in the lives of Canadian children and youth. Through the generosity of our customers and employees, the Canada Post Community Foundation can fund important programs in communities across the country every year,” says Doug Ettinger, President and Chief Executive Officer of Canada Post.

The $25,000 grant awarded to Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta will significantly contribute to the expansion and enhancement of the organization’s mental health resources, particularly aimed at girls in vulnerable communities. 

Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta extends its gratitude to Canada Post Community Foundation for its generous support, which will enable the organization to continue its vital work in promoting the well-being and empowerment of girls in the region.

“Tackling gender-specific mental health is an ever-increasing and intricate need in the Wood Buffalo region. With this support, we can continue to equip girls with the knowledge and tools needed to navigate the complexities of well-being while transforming unique challenges into social change,” says Nanase Tonda, Executive Director of Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta.  

“We have seen an increase in mental health challenges our girls are facing, particularly as they explore the world after COVID-19 restriction. Being isolated for a prolonged period of time, girls are navigating to be open to interactions with others. Through this funding, we will be able to provide them with tools to steer through their new environment and build healthy relationships while being true to themselves.

The stamps that commemorate the Canada Post Foundation are themed ‘Will you read me a story?’ This directly aligns with our programs Power of Stories and Mind + Body, encouraging participants to use the power of storytelling to speak their truth and navigate through mental health challenges. We encourage you to purchase their stamps to inspire more girls to be strong, smart and bold,” expressed Sundas Shamshad, Interim Executive Director of Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta.

To commemorate this significant milestone and acknowledge the outstanding contributions of Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta, a special cheque presentation event was held on Wednesday, September 20 at the Fort McMurray Main Post Office.

The Canada Post Community Foundation operates as a registered charity, functioning independently of Canada Post. It is dedicated to ensuring that every dollar raised goes directly to communities in need, demonstrating a strong commitment to creating a positive impact where it matters most.

Individuals interested in contributing to the Canada Post Community Foundation’s vital work can do so by purchasing a booklet of stamps at a local post office or by visiting


About ‘Mind + Body’ and ‘Power of Stories’ Programs

‘Mind + Body’ is a holistic program designed to support and promote the overall well-being of girls by recognizing that physical and mental wellness are interconnected. This program focuses on crucial content areas such as overall wellness, physical activity, body image, nutrition, and stress management. It encompasses various formats, including after-school and in-school multi-session programs, workshops, in-school workshops, and rural outreach kit delivery.

The ‘Power of Stories’ program is a culturally immersive initiative. It centers on Indigenous storytelling to promote intercultural understanding, mental health awareness, and violence prevention. Participants develop storytelling and listening skills guided by seven core Indigenous values. The program embraces local knowledge and the wisdom of Elders, respecting sacred protocols. It not only imparts essential knowledge but also fosters community bonds. By nurturing both participants and future facilitators, it equips all girls to become resilient leaders in a diverse world.

About Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta:

Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta (Girls Inc.) is a non-profit organization with a mission to inspire all girls to be strong, smart and bold. The organization’s holistic approach to girl development equips girls to overcome gender, economic, and societal challenges, fostering their growth into healthy, educated, and independent individuals. Established in 2004, Girls Inc. has steadily expanded its presence in the Wood Buffalo Region. In 2022 alone, the organization inspired over 1,900 girls throughout the region – a remarkable increase of 310 in 2016. Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta is committed to enriching the Wood Buffalo region as an even greater place for girls to thrive. For more information, please visit


About Canada Post Community Foundation:

The Canada Post Community Foundation is a philanthropic organization dedicated to making a meaningful impact in the lives of Canadian children and youth, up to the age of 21. Since its establishment in 2012, the Community Foundation has been a beacon of support, granting over $12.3 million to 1,100 projects across Canada.