Cemetery Vandalism and Rehabilitation Fund

Cemetery Vandalism and Rehabilitation Fund

Ontario Ancestors is dedicated to helping support community efforts to repair damage to cemeteries incurred by acts of vandalism and for rehabilitation projects within cemeteries that are considered to have historical or cultural significance. To assist in this effort, Ontario Ancestors has created the Cemetery Vandalism and Rehabilitation Fund. Charitable donations to Ontario Ancestors may be directed to the Cemetery Fund to assist in these efforts and to help us be more prepared when the need arises.

Ontario Ancestors’ mission includes the preservation of material relevant to Ontario-related genealogical study in any applicable form, including the physical record of our ancestors, as recorded on headstones in Ontario’s cemeteries. Indeed, Ontario Ancestors has been a leader in mapping and recording headstones since the early days of the Society, with a volunteer led project across the Province in the 1970s and 1980s to record most cemeteries in Ontario at the time, with continual efforts in the years since to maintain up to date records where volunteers are available.

Vandalism in Ontario’s cemeteries has become a growing concern across the Province in recent years. There have been a number of news stories showcasing the senseless acts that are destroying monuments and large parts of some cemeteries. In the aftermath of such acts, the responsibility for repairs has mostly fallen upon the Cemetery organization to pay for the refurbishment of the grounds and headstones. In today’s society, it has become increasingly difficult for these organizations to come up with the additional un-planned funds required to undertake these repairs, often employing the use of volunteers and secondary organizations such as the Scouts Canada to assist them. Often these other organizations resort to fundraising on their own to support the efforts.

The Cemetery Committee of Ontario Ancestors proposed the creation of the “Cemetery Vandalism & Rehabilitation Fund” to support these small organizations in their efforts. The fund will be seeded with $5,000 to get it going and will be replenished through a separate donation system within “CanadaHelps.org” donation platform. 

According to Society President Steve Fulton UE: “Ontario Ancestors is excited to be able to play a role in the preservation of local cemeteries across the province alongside “The Boots on the Ground” people who are dedicated to our ancestors and their final resting place.” Joe Wilson, Chair of the Cemetery Committee, also expressed his appreciation for the establishment of this fund by saying: “Its not the Cemetery itself but what is contained within it, that needs to be protected. I am proud to be a member of an organization that is devoted to the advocacy and preservation of Ontario’s Cemeteries.”

To learn more about what Ontario Ancestors may fund, CLICK HERE, and to make an application for funding, CLICK HERE.

To donate to the Cemetery Vandalism and Rehabilitation Fund, CLICK HERE.

About Ontario Ancestors – The Ontario Genealogical Society
Ontario Ancestors is an Ontario registered non-profit corporation, a registered Canadian charity and, is Canada’s largest member supported genealogical organization. Founded in 1961, with the vision of being recognized as the authority and leader in all aspects of Ontario related family history research, preservation and communication, the mission of Ontario Ancestors is to encourage, bring together and assist those interested in the pursuit of family history and to preserve Ontario’s genealogical heritage. Ontario Ancestors has 30 geographically based branches throughout Ontario together with 5 special interest groups (British Home Children, Eastern European, Scottish, Irish and Irish-Palatine). Ontario Ancestors has published numerous books and pamphlets to assist Ontario researchers, provides its respected journal, Families, to its members, and publishes a weekly online newsletter highlighting events of interest to Ontario researchers. Our Branches have transcribed the majority of Ontario cemeteries and published numerous indices which are the foundation of family history and genealogical research in Ontario. Learn more about the Ontario Ancestors HERE.