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KidSport Launches 12th Annual National Give the Gift of Sport Campaign

Vancouver/Fraser Valley – KidSport™ has launched their 12th annual Give the Gift of Sport™ fundraising campaign, calling on British Columbians to donate this holiday season and help more kids participate in organized sport in the coming year. The campaign, which launched on November 20, runs until January 8, 2024.

Sport is an invaluable part of many children’s lives. Unfortunately, the rising cost of living is putting pressure on many British Columbians to afford basic necessities, and that means enrolling a child in in sports is simply not an option for many families. KidSport aims to remove the financial barriers to sport participation by providing grants to help cover the costs of registration fees so more children and youth can experience the joy of a season of sport.

Last year, KidSport chapters in BC distributed more than $1.7 million to fund a season of sport for 5,377 kids in 180 communities across the province. So far this year, the number of approved grant applications for the first ten months of 2023 totaled 6,231 – a 16% increase over last year (with year-end figure projected to be 25-30% over the 2022 mark).

At the same time, the number of grant applications (in communities in which there is not a KidSport chapter) for 2023 currently total 1,093, compared to 733 for the 2022. Calendar year – a 49% increase and counting.

Examples of processed grant applications (by community) include the following:

  Community    2023  2022  Year-Over-Year Increase  
Abbotsford138109+27%
Chilliwack15681+93%
Creston6555+18%
Fort Nelson134124+8%
Kamloops273173+58%
Nanaimo161110+46%
New Westminster11393+22%
Powell River2913+123%
Prince George8667+28%
Richmond355285+25%
Salmon Arm5437+46%
Squamish3924+63%
Surrey/White Rock697516+35%
Tri Cities330242+36%
Vancouver417359+16%

“We are seeing a significant increase in grant applications in comparison to the past couple of years and donations are needed to ensure we can continue to meet the growing demand for support,” says Angela Crowther, KidSport BC’s Director. “We rely on donations from the public to ensure we can continue providing grants for kids in need.”

“Sport BC is proud of our signature program, KidSport and its efforts to help more kids benefit from organized sport,” says Rob Newman, President & CEO of Sport BC. “We know participation in sport is good for a child’s physical health, but it can also have benefits for their mental health, and provides important opportunities for kids to build friendships, gain confidence and create positive community connections that help fuel their potential.”

Contributions to KidSport through the GIFT OF SPORT campaign, have a direct impact on a child’s life and help alleviate stress for parents who are struggling to make ends meet. The organization receives numerous messages each year from parents who are grateful for the support, like this one:

“Oh, my goodness. I don’t know what to say! My son has a huge passion for hockey and loves to play, he even is up and ready for the early morning practices before my alarm goes off! As a single mom, his fees and equipment put us in a position where I was holding off paying bills and really cutting back on spending any where we could. This grant is amazing, I can breathe and not stress at night about how I am going to afford the next month’s fees. Thank you so so much. There is nothing more joyous than watching your child do what they love; you made this possible and now completely stress free for our family this hockey season.”

The KidSport program, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, was created by the board and staff at Sport BC in 1993 to help address the challenges many families face when registering their children in organized sport. Since then, KidSport has expanded to become a national entity with 11 provincial/territorial chapters and over 160 community-based chapters across Canada, including 39 chapters in communities throughout British Columbia.

2022 Kid Sport Funding

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