April 10, 2020
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AFFILIATE REPORTS: NORTH AMERICA
BCTEAL, CHARITABLE GIVING THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE, KEY THEME - ASSOCIATION FOUNDATIONS, ENDOWMENTS, BENEFITS

Michael Galli, British Columbia Institute of Technology, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

BCTEAL Charitable Foundation Gala

In 1986, the association of British Columbia teachers of English as an additional language (BC TEAL) was the first English as an additional language (EAL) association to establish a charitable foundation, and 34 years later, the TEAL Charitable Foundation (TCF) is running stronger than ever. The foundation supports the teaching and learning of EAL, and with its recently established Nicholas Collins Founders Refugee Award, the TCF’s endowments now total over one million Canadian dollars (1 CAD = approx. 0.75 USD). These endowment funds produce healthy annual awards for TEAL practitioners and students, and to date, the TCF has paid out over CA$500,000 in bursaries and awards.

The TCF was the brainchild of Nicholas Collins and several other BC TEAL Directors, and over the past thirty-plus years, 11 different awards and bursaries were created. These awards and bursaries can be found on the BC TEAL website (https://www.bcteal.org/teal-charitable-foundation), and they include:

  • BC TEAL/TESOL Award
  • David Lam/BC TEAL English Language Learner Scholarship
  • Health Education Award
  • Mary Ashworth Scholarship
  • Nan Poliakoff Memorial Award
  • Pat Wakefield Scholarship
  • Project Funding Award
  • Settlement Language Resource Award
  • Taiga Galli Memorial Refugee Award
  • TCF Refugee Award
  • Nicholas Collins Founders Refugee Award

Over the past decade, the TCF set about fundraising to establish new endowments and awards, specifically to assist students with refugee experiences in affording post-secondary tuition. Three refugee awards have been established, two with $100,000 endowments, and the most recent, with a planned goal of $250,000.

The support the TCF has received for the refugee awards, from within the EAL community as well as the broader community, has been enormous. One important factor in the creation of these awards was the matching funds that were pledged. BC TEAL very generously matched every dollar donated to the TCF Refugee Award as well as the Taiga Galli Memorial Refugee Award. However, the most recent award was kick-started with the single largest private donation in the history of the Foundation: CA$125,000. This generous gift was donated contingent on matching funds, to which the TCF has already contributed an additional CA$70,000, leaving us with approximately CA$50,000 to raise to reach our goal.

Our Benefactor

Nicholas Collins has been a longstanding supporter of BC TEAL, contributing in a variety of ways for the past four decades. His list of roles include:

President: BC TEAL (1981–1985)

Past president: BC TEAL (1985–1989)

Conference Chair: 26th Annual TESOL Convention (1992)

Conference Chair: BC TEAL Conference (2012)

President, Secretary, Treasurer, Vice-President: TESL Canada (1980s)

In 1986, as one of the founding members of the TEAL Charitable Foundation, Nick chaired the committee for three terms. What started with a mere CA$5,000 endowment has grown to a combined endowment of over one million Canadian dollars.

It is fair to say that Nicholas Collins has touched the lives of many people during the 40 years that he has been involved in language education, and this new award in his name will continue in perpetuity to help students who require financial assistance to advance their education. In a world where some seek to create division and disparity, Nick stands out as one person committed to bringing us together in pursuit of a common goal.

The TCF has a long and proud history of providing financial assistance to BC TEAL members in their pursuit of professional development opportunities, as well as EAL students who have demonstrated their ambition to seek post-secondary education. With outstanding leaders and gracious donors, we have carried on a tradition of philanthropy that injects life into the fabric of our profession and our community. This is something that all BC TEAL members can derive a sense of pride in, and there is a feeling that these positive effects will continue to reverberate throughout our community as those who have felt the benefits of receiving often develop a deeper understanding of the benefits of giving.

Michael Galli was President of BC TEAL from 2007–2012, and is now the Chair of the TEAL Charitable Foundation. He is the Manager of International Recruitment and Admissions with BCIT International.

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