For three generations, the Weston Family has maintained a tradition of giving. Now, that tradition continues under a new name, as The W. Garfield Weston Foundation becomes the Weston Family Foundation.
We will be launching a new website soon.
More than 60 years of philanthropy has taught us that there’s a relationship between healthy landscapes and healthy people. That’s why we champion world-class health research and innovation with the same passion that we support initiatives to protect and restore biodiversity.
We take a collaborative approach to philanthropy, working alongside forward-thinking partners to advance Canada and create lasting impacts. We aspire to do more than provide funding, as we enable others to find transformational ways to improve the well-being of Canadians.
With our new name comes a new logo: a simple, modern interpretation of a wheat sheaf with a W at its core. A design that reflects our family’s history – and the resolve of the Foundation’s founders – while reflecting our innovative spirit and forward-thinking initiatives.
As the result of a two-year strategic review, the Foundation has narrowed its focus areas to two pillars: Health and Landscapes. We're taking a spark, shepherd, scale approach to ensure the best ideas have the best chances of success. When it comes to grantmaking, our philosophy is straightforward - we fund research and initiatives that we believe will have actual, measurable impacts on the well-being of Canadians.
A prototype helmet for the Weston Family Focused Ultrasound Initiative — Photo credit: Jason Mortlock
Enabling Healthy Aging for Canadians
Our Health Strategy aims to catalyze and scale science-based approaches to significantly improve the health of Canadians. The Weston Brain Institute is advancing research that will treat and prevent neurological diseases of aging. The Weston Family Microbiome Initiative is helping researchers understand the role of the microbiome in healthy aging. And our Brain Health Program combines the two to research the long-term maintenance of brain health.
We’ve set our sights on outcomes that are nothing short of transformative: more Canadians maintaining optimal health as they get older; decreasing the economic burden of diseases of aging in Canada; and giving Canadians a better understanding of how they themselves can maintain optimal health and independence.
Weston Family Northern Scientist William Twardek studies salmon migration on the Takhini River, YT – Photo credit: Karlie Knight
Improving Environmental Sustainability
Our Landscapes Strategy aims to restore and protect biodiversity in Canada’s wild, agricultural and urban lands. Again, we’re thinking big: we want environmental outcomes with long-term impacts. We want to see changes in practices and behaviours that increase ecological and economic sustainability to improve resiliency; and we want to increase knowledge and appreciation of the ecosystem services provided by Canadian landscapes.
On March 3, the Foundation announced the Weston Family Prairie Grasslands Initiative – nearly $25M awarded to five organizations to protect and restore one of Canada’s most ecologically-valuable and threatened ecosystems. Read more about the initiative here.