Youth in Terrace could spend their after-school afternoons paddling out on the water through a local sport program.
The Skeena Paddle Club was given $2,000 from the joint federal-provincial BC Sport Participation Program (BCSPP) to provide youth in community schools and local after-school care programs to teach them how to paddle canoes and kayaks.
The program will also train and certify new coaches at the “CanoeKids” level.
The Skeena Paddle Club aims to build the paddling community in the Skeena watershed by focusing on white-water rafting and paddling. The funding will be used to facilitate a branched-off sprint kayak and canoe program to teach Terrace’s younger residents on how to handle themselves on the water.
“Kids need to get outside and connect with nature, get some exercise and get inspired,” says Ali Marshall, club founder. “It’s important for youth to learn how to handle themselves on the river”, noting the more recent fatalities on northwest B.C. rivers recently.”
“The Paddle Club is definitely one way to learn about what to do on the river. It’s good that the kids are getting exercise outdoors, connecting to the environment and learning a good life skill as far as river safety.”
The BCSPP is a partnership between the governments of Canada and British Columbia.
This year, Canada and B.C. are making matched investments totalling more than $1.2 million aimed at getting more people of all abilities active in their communities and involved in a variety of sports, such as tennis, wheelchair basketball, para-ice hockey and snowboarding.