Hebert Group sets up new foundation for SE Sask

Deep Roots Foundation: Scholarships at five local schools, airport funding among first priorities

January 16, 2023, 11:37 am

Kristjan Hebert, president of The Hebert Group.

The Hebert Group announced last week it will be making significant financial investments into several southeastern Saskatchewan communities through its new Deep Roots Foundation.

With the goal of improving the quality of life for those living in rural communities, the charitable foundation has three priority areas including agriculture, athletics and community wellness.

To kick off the launch of the Foundation, all employees of the Hebert Group received $500 in December to donate to an organization of their choice.

“This is something that we have been wanting to do for a long time and is really important to our team. We all live and have kids in these communities and we want to see them thrive here—whether it’s a new rink, hospital equipment or a 4H Club. We love rural Saskatchewan and want people to stay here,” says Kristjan Hebert, President of The Hebert Group.

The goal is to make significant investments into the five rural communities and city where the Hebert Group operates.

Those communities are Moosomin, Whitewood, Redvers, Wawota, Maryfield and Saskatoon.

The Deep Roots Foundation Scholarship Fund will award scholarships to post-secondary-bound grade 12 students pursuing studies in either agriculture or business.

Annual scholarships of $2,000 will be awarded at each of the five local high schools.

Hebert says the Foundation will also work closely with the Community Builders Alliance on the new Moosomin airport expansion project.

Hebert Grain Ventures has already committed $25,000 to the project.

“Having an upgraded airport in Moosomin has become critical for our region. A regional airport contributes to the local economy and supports vital public services such as air ambulance, law enforcement and fire suppression,” says Hebert.

Jeff Warkentin of the Hebert Group said a substantial amount has been pledged to get the foundation started.

“We had the concept in mind for a while about giving back to the communities where we live, where the staff live and where we conduct business, and we took the step to establish the charitable donations so we could formalize it and bring some structure to it.

We’ve pledged up to $100,000 to start with and that will be reviewed on a yearly basis,” Warkentin said.

The Foundation is welcoming requests from local groups and organizations at https://deeprootsfoundation.ca Application forms can be found on the Deep Roots website.

Applying through the website is the best way to ensure requests are considered.

“The funding requests will go to our management team on a weekly basis and based on whether they meet the areas of community investment, three of them being agriculture, athletics and community development, the management team will either approve or deny them,” Warkentin says.

Why go the foundation route as opposed to making donations directly from the company?

“We wanted to de-couple it a little bit from the business,” says Warkentin.

“We looked at other businesses in other areas similar to ours that had done the same initiatives and that’s what we based the model off of.”