Capital Project

Best week of summer

“The Final Flush”

Camp Evergreen Family,

I hope you are all well and looking forward to Easter. We have so much to be thankful for, but the fact that Jesus is risen and that we live in His transformative redemption is our greatest gift of all!

As many of you are interested in the status of capital development at camp, I wanted to update you on some of the progress we are making. The Board of Directors recently approved the construction of phases four and five of Camp’s septic infrastructure upgrades. While we will have a more detailed update for our Membership at the Annual General Meeting in May, the following are some of the key highlights about the Society’s financial position, financial decision-making regarding this project, and some of the rationale for completing this project in 2024.

General Background:

  • Phases one, two, and three of the septic upgrades on site are complete. Completing phases four and five will make the project fully functional.
  • Major construction on the site will be sterilized until the septic project is complete. Once this major infrastructure modernization is finished, the Society will be in a position to take other steps toward facility development that has been discussed over the past decade.
  • Without the septic upgrades, there is risk to the Society with changing government wastewater regulations which have introduced potential for the local, provincial, and/or federal governments to require the septic upgrades without advanced notice to the Society.
  • To further add to the pressures that the Society was experiencing regarding the septic project, the prospective vendors indicated that they would only hold their construction pricing until the end of March 2024 for the 2023 pricing to be honoured. Further, there are some construction materials necessary for the project that are highly recommended to be pre-ordered as they are likely to take months to come in and could cause project delays if not ordered in advance.
  • While it is difficult to predict the inflationary impact of not proceeding with an intent to construct before the vendor deadline, construction inflation is usually in the range of a minimum of 10 to 20% per year, with some projects coming in up to 50% higher.

Financial Background:

  • The Society cleared two of three debts we had last fiscal year, with the only remaining debt of approximately $190,000 pertaining to the septic phase three project.
  • The Government of Alberta requested additional information from the Society in support of our grant application for phases 4 and 5 of the septic project. While this does not indicate that the grant is secured, it is an indication that the Society qualifies and is being considered for the $125,000 we applied for.
  • The Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Legacy Fund has confirmed that the Society is approved for a total loan of $800,000 toward the next phases of the septic project. The Society intends to use this as a bridge loan while fundraising is underway, and any debt required while construction is underway will be paid back by December 2025.
  • To date, the Fundraising and Development Coordinator has secured pledges of $205,000 toward the project. $27,500 of the pledged amount has been received so far.

From my perspective, the most critical factor in this decision was, and continues to be, the unity of the board in making this decision. Phases four and five need to proceed to construction to complete the septic project and to prepare the site for future capital development, so the decision before the board was not “if”, but “when”. What matters most to the Society is therefore the unity of the board in deciding on the timing and funding plan, and our board was unanimous in their direction to proceed in 2024.

If Camp Evergreen intends to prepare for larger-scale capital projects, the septic project is a prime opportunity to exercise our capital project “training wheels” and gain experience in project planning, grant leveraging, significant capital fundraising, and construction management. While we recognize it is a significant financial investment required, it is the groundwork for more significant capital development in the near future.

Our hope is to draw on the bridge loan from Legacy minimally during construction and fundraise for the full amount of this project by December 2025. The Society’s Partnerships and Development Coordinator will reach out to many of you in the coming weeks and months to invite you to financially partner with us for our “Final Flush” capital campaign. If you are interested in giving toward this project, you are invited to click on this link.

While the efforts and generosity of many Camp Evergreen supporters have helped bring this project to this point, I would especially like to acknowledge the leadership of Don Quapp and Bob Thiessen, who have stewarded this complex and, at times, highly stressful project to date. We are so thankful that Don will continue as our volunteer Project Manager for phases four and five.

As always, our Chair, Nate Gartke (, and I are available if you have any questions or would like to discuss this project further. I hope to see you all at any of the life-giving camps, retreats, or special events we have planned over the coming months.

In His Service With You,

Courtney Armstrong | Executive Director