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Kidsport Wood Buffalo receives $40,000 donation

Last Updated Aug 14, 2019 at 3:57 pm MDT

PHOTO. Board members of the Wood Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame and Kidsport Wood Buffalo announced a new partnership that would see Kidsport receive $20,000 in each of the next two years. MYMCMURRAY/Phil Wood.

Kidsport Wood Buffalo entered a new partnership with the Wood Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame.

The two-year agreement worth $40,000 would see financial support for children in our community looking to enter sports.

Access to sport

President of the Sports Hall of Fame, Owen Erskine, made the announcement at the hall in the Syncrude Sport & Wellness Centre.

Erskine said the donation will help more kids in the region participate in sport.

“While the [Hall of Fame]’s focus is on the recognition of sports excellence for those in our community, we also need to support access to those sports, and this partnership with Kidsport will certainly do that from a grassroots level.”

Erskine along with the Sports Hall of Fame board presented Kidsport Wood Buffalo with a $20,000 cheque.

He said he hopes the donation will bring the non-profit some long-term stability, in particular with administrative costs.

“Two years is just [the] beginning for us. We’re looking to do this as a very long-standing commitment with them.”

Erskine also announced the development of a scholarship program with Keyano College, and the public and separate school districts.

Kidsport Wood Buffalo executive director Jamal-e-Fatima Rafat said funding is their bloodline.

“[We’re] very excited because this means that we [can] keep doing the work that we do. Funding and donations [are] what keep us going, and keeps those kids playing the activity they want to participate in.”

The non-profit group provides up to $600 per child annually so they can participate in sports.

In 2018, Kidsport raised $194,914 to help 521 kids remove financial barriers preventing them from play.

Rafat said thanks to the two-year donation, the funds would support up to 40 children.

“That mean community to us: It affects parents, guardians, and grandparents, it also helps the community understand how to work with children who come from difficult financial backgrounds, and it also creates resiliency in the community.”

Formed in 2010, Kidsport invested over $525,000 giving 1374 kids in Wood Buffalo the gift of sport.