The Government of Canada recognizes the tremendous power and many benefits of sport. Sport builds self-esteem and leadership skills. It allows our children and youth to grow and thrive-physically, emotionally and mentally. Sport is also a powerful tool for integration, but not all children come from the same background. In order to ensure that all Canadians have access to sport activities, we need to try new approaches to bring down barriers.
Today, the Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and Member of Parliament (Scarborough Southwest), announced $218,435 in funding to Boys and Girls Club of West Scarborough to support Bounce Back League, a trauma-informed sport program for newcomer children. He made this announcement on behalf of the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage.
There are several barriers to newcomers accessing sport leagues: language and communication, transportation, enabling female participation, and the need to build capacity of staff to appropriately engage newcomer children and youth. The funding will help break down these barriers. Children aged 8 to 12 will participate in the pilot-project program with the goal of increasing children’s participation in after-school sport leagues.
This funding is being provided through the Innovation Initiative of the Government of Canada’s Sport Support Program.
“Through the Innovation Initiative, our government is encouraging organizations to try new approaches to increase sport participation. Sport can help young people develop a better self-image and a greater sense of belonging to their community. It can also guide them toward a better future. Congratulations to Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada for breaking down barriers and making sport more accessible.”
-The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage
“Our government is proud to support innovative initiatives such as this one that create optimal environments for all Canadians to take part in sport. Everyone deserves to have access to sport opportunities, no matter their age, gender or background, and I congratulate the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada for ensuring no children are left behind.”
-The Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and Member of Parliament (Scarborough Southwest)
“At Boys and Girls Clubs, impact and innovation are the driving forces behind the programs and services we provide for 200,000 children and youth across the country. This principle is embodied in Bounce Back League, a unique sports program that incorporates trauma-informed approaches to help children and youth develop resilience and handle stress-at school, at home and in the future. We are proud to expand this program to meet the needs of a growing population of newcomer youth in Scarborough and we are grateful to Canadian Heritage for funding this first of its kind program.”
– Owen Charters, President and CEO, Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada
The Innovation Initiative has three main goals: test new or adapted quality sport approaches (for example, new programs, strategies and technologies) that align with one or more of the Canadian Sport Policy goals; evaluate and document successes and failures of the approach; and share results for nationwide use and implementation.
The next call for concepts will take place in fall 2020.
The Government of Canada is the single largest contributor to sport in this country and supports sport participation and excellence through federal programs and policies.