Winnifred Stewart Association
When people with developmental disabilities connect with Winnifred Stewart Association (WSA) they experience opportunities that inspire dreams and empower them to be the people they want to be.
WSA provides a unique approach to personalized support that assists individuals with developmental disabilities to lead fulfilling lives and become integral members of the community.
Combining over 65 years of experience and best practices from around the world, WSA’s continuum of care is a one-of-a-kind model that is recognized and respected throughout Alberta and across Canada.
THE LEGACY OF MRS. WINNIFRED STEWART
Winnifred Mary Stewart was a determined woman whose son, Parker, was born with a developmental disability. She wanted to give Parker every possible chance to grow and develop to his full potential, but she encountered obstacles and resistance from a society that, at the time, felt children like Parker were “lost causes” and better off in institutions.
Mrs. Stewart believed that people with developmental disabilities had more to offer society than was recognized at the time – a revolutionary thought. Along with a small group of parents, she started the Edmonton Association for the Mentally Handicapped and the Winnifred Stewart School, which was the first of its kind in Canada. At its peak, the school served over 450 students. The school was closed in 1982 when children with disabilities were integrated into the regular school system.
Today, WSA carries on the legacy started by Mrs. Stewart, working with adults with developmental disabilities with the spirit of this remarkable woman living on throughout the organization. Over the years, there have been numerous changes and today, close to 200 people participate in WSA’s residential, day and community support programs. Those served are all adults with developmental disabilities, and the goal is to support them as they strive to live satisfying, meaningful lives.
To support individuals with developmental disabilities to meet their potential and have full lives in an inclusive, supportive community.
WSA supports and responds to the goals of the individual, their families and friends by providing services that honor choice, community inclusiveness and quality of life for the individual.
WSA Endowment Fund
In 2017, the Winnifred Stewart Foundation established an endowment fund with an initial $100,000 investment with the Edmonton Community Foundation.
The creation of the Winnifred Stewart Association Endowment Fund will help to ensure the future sustainability of the Association and ensure it can continue to support individuals with developmental disabilities to meet their potential and have full lives in an inclusive, supportive community.
Contributing to an endowment fund is an excellent way to leave a lasting legacy, and provide support for generations to come.
Each year, donors looking to make a major gift have the option to designate their donation to our endowment fund, with the option to create their own named fund to create a lasting legacy for their family. Named funds can be created as an emerging fund, allowing the donor up to 10 years to contribute the full $10,000 required to establish the endowment.
Donors are also able to contribute directly to the Winnifred Stewart Association Endowment Fund through the Edmonton Community Foundation.
To ensure the fund continues to grow, the Winnifred Stewart Foundation makes an annual contribution to the endowment fund with a portion of any undesignated legacy gifts received throughout the year. With an annual disbursement of 4%, the endowment fund provides additional operating dollars for programs and services offered by Winnifred Stewart Association.
For more information on how to contribute to the Winnifred Stewart Association Endowment Fund and make a gift that continues to give, please contact our Director of Development, Candace Smallwood at CandaceS@wsaf.ca
Donate to This Fund
Fill out the form below to contribute a one-time donation, or set up a recurring monthly donation to the Winnifred Stewart Association Endowment Fund.