Kid­sport fac­ing fundrais­ing chal­lenges as sport reg­is­tra­tion costs rise

The Southwest Booster - - FRONT PAGE -

The Swift Cur­rent Kid­sport Com­mit­tee will be ex­pand­ing their fund-rais­ing ef­forts in the com­ing year in re­sponse to an in­crease in costs of sports reg­is­tra­tion.

The lo­cal Kid­sport group held a suc­cess­ful fundrais­ing break­fast on Novem­ber 16, with the funds raised help­ing them ful­fill their man­date of pro­vid­ing the nec­es­sary sport­ing equip­ment and pay­ing for sport reg­is­tra­tion fees to al­low chil­dren to par­tic­i­pate in sports.

Swift Cur­rent Kid­sport has op­er­ated in the com­mu­nity since 1996 when they had 11 applicants. They have grown to sup­port around 150 chil­dren a year, and spend ap­prox­i­mately $40,000 to $50,000 to sup­port those chil­dren.

Swift Cur­rent Kid­sport Com­mit­tee Chair­per­son Richard Bis­son­nette noted there are chal­lenges in meet­ing their needed fundrais­ing to­tals.

“We need to con­tinue to raise money,” he said. “Dur­ing the year we have two ba­sic blitzes, spring and fall for sports. And ev­ery time its $70,000 to $80,000. And we need to have our com­mu­nity con­tinue to step up and help us out in help­ing these kids get out there.”

As they are com­pet­ing with other char­i­ties and com­mu­nity projects, they are look­ing for new ideas and ex­cit­ing ways to get peo­ple in­volved. In 2019 they will be un­veil­ing a spon­sor a child pro­gram where a busi­ness or in­di­vid­ual can spon­sor a young ath­lete to par­tic­i­pate in sports.

“We re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate all the sup­port we get from our City, be­cause with­out them we wouldn’t even ex­ist and there would be a lot of kids on the side­lines.”

The guest speaker at the break­fast was Swift Cur­rent Bron­cos all-time lead­ing goal scorer Todd Holt. Holt played five sea­sons be­tween 1989-90 to 1993-1994, scor­ing a fran­chise best 216 goals and his is the team’s ca­reer point leader with 423 points.

Holt gave an en­cour­ag­ing ad­dress for par­ents to be a pos­i­tive in­flu­ence and en­cour­ager for their chil­dren.

“The mes­sage I try to share with a lot of peo­ple, it doesn’t mat­ter if you’re in gym­nas­tics or bad­minton or hockey or base­ball, or what sport the kids are in. If the kids are go­ing to go in it, bury your­self in it. The more down­time kids have it is where they find the video games and be­come couch pota­toes,” Holt said. “I al­ways try to push the par­ents and push the peo­ple around them to re­ally give them the op­por­tu­nity. And that’s ex­actly what Kid­sport does, it gives these kids who are less for­tu­nate that want to play but can’t, it gives them an op­por­tu­nity to be a part of some­thing spe­cial. Be­ing part of teams is what it’s all about.”

“The cham­pi­onships, the goals, the records, they all come and go. But it’s the friend­ships and the stuff you achieve through sport they came on for­ever.”

He also ad­vised young ath­letes to keep pur­su­ing their ath­letic goals as long as pos­si­ble.

“Don’t stop. Life throws curve balls at us all the time. We don’t know where life is go­ing to take us, and that’s a good thing. I think that if we knew how life was go­ing to turn out we’d try to put a twist on it that we’d mess it up worse than it ac­tu­ally was. So my mes­sage to the youth would just be to keep striv­ing, set goals.”

Holt, who at­tended a num­ber of Bronco games dur­ing their 2018 Cham­pi­onship play­off run, said he is proud to still hold a num­ber of team records.

“I’m ab­so­lutely hon­oured,” Holt ad­mits. “The num­ber 423, it’s got a spe­cial place in my heart. I worked re­ally hard though some dif­fi­cult times to achieve that. And I’ll al­ways hold that dear to my heart. I never would have been able to do that with­out my team­mates, my line mates, and the peo­ple who were on the ice with me who were there ev­ery step of the way.”

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