We hope you are all staying safe, healthy and active during this time. Despite the challenges that the world is facing, we are staying positive and pressing forward with the S4N Initiative here in Edmonton as best as we can! A lot of great things have gone on this month and we are excited to share them with you.
One of the highlights of last month was seeing the A4HC (Action for Healthy Communities) newcomer youth soccer team play their last game of the indoor season! They are an enthusiastic group of boys who love to be on the field. Although the indoor season has now completed, we have been able to get the team registered to begin their outdoor season which we hope will start sometime soon!
Another recent highlight was being able to make lots of progress with the planning and facilitation of some of the events/programs that we had planned. The first one being the Girls Sport Program. We were able to finalize all of the plans for the program with the host school and also connect with the girls to get them excited about it. Everything was set to go for the program to begin, but two days before it was to start, all schools were closed. It was unfortunate timing but we are so happy that the relationships and partnerships we’ve made with the school and with the youth are still intact. We know this program has been set up so that it can occur sometime in the future. The relationships we’ve created through the planning of the program will carry things forward at some other time.
This month we’ve also made a lot of progress in the planning stage of the Sport for Newcomers Try It Day! This is an event that we’ve been thinking about and planning for since the start of the pilot project. We wanted to have a celebration day at the end of the pilot where newcomer youth could come to one location and have multiple quality sport experiences, barrier free. This month we were able to reach out to local sport organizations to invite them to participate in this special day. We had a lot of positive feedback and were able to get support from organizations representing volleyball, dodgeball, lacrosse and football. Although this event may need to take place at a later date, we are doing everything we can now so that it will be a smooth and successful event in the future.
A big goal of this pilot project is to ensure sustainability in all that we do. We want these sport opportunities for newcomers to continue even after the pilot project is complete. How we do that is by helping A4HC to have the right tools to be able to continue on with what we’ve accomplished through the pilot. We are building capacity at A4HC in a number of ways including creating resources to help A4HC connect youth to free/low cost sport opportunities, creating detailed sport session outlines so that they can be reproduced in the future, and by creating lasting partnerships with local sport organizations that will continue long after the pilot is complete. Even though we aren’t able to currently run any sport programming, we have high hopes that we are doing work now that will help A4HC have the tools they need to assist in providing sport opportunities to newcomer youth in the future!
One way that we have been able to continue to connect with newcomer youth in Edmonton is through the use of various social media platforms. Through these channels we have been able to share ideas with youth on how to stay active while at home. In addition to that, we are so excited to be able to participate in a Live Chat with Commonwealth Athlete- Sam Effah! Sam will speak about the life lessons he has learned through sport, growing up as a second generation Canadian and his experience as a finalist in the Commonwealth Games. We can’t wait for the youth to hear from such an accomplished athlete and well rounded role model. We’ll be sure to provide an update on how the Live Chat goes in our next post!
Until next time!