EDMONTON, AB - In a team effort to make a significant impact in growing the game of hockey in Northern Alberta, the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation (EOCF) has committed $1.5 million in funding to the Hockey Alberta Foundation (HAF) this past October.
In the first funding grant as part of this partnership, 50 applications from across Northern Alberta were submitted and the EOCF along with the HAF have approved 44 fulfillments. These grants totalled more than $600,000 with more funding to come in 2022, as the next application deadline for the Member Program Grant is February 28.
Groups who received 2021 grants include:
- Accessible programs for low income families/vulnerable youth
- Introduction to hockey programming
- Coaching training/certification
- Equity, diversity and inclusion training/programming
- Female programming
- Sled hockey equipment
- Travel costs for remote communities
- Referee retainment
- Try hockey for free programming
The funding will continue to generate support for three areas:
- Hockey Alberta Foundation’s Every Kid Every Community grant program
- Hockey Alberta’s member grant program, supported by the EOCF
- Hockey Alberta’s volunteer recognition/thank you program
"Helping minor hockey and the growth of the game in Alberta has always been an important mandate for the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation," said Kevin Lowe, EOCF Director and Hockey Hall of Fame defenceman. "This past year was difficult for minor hockey participants, their families, coaches and all minor hockey associations throughout the province. These grants will provide funding and stability, allowing organizations to continue to grow the game of hockey in our province."
The new Hockey Alberta member grant program allows access to funding for Hockey Alberta members in Northern and Central Alberta. Priority for funding will continue to be given to those in need for leadership development, introduction to hockey, female, para, Indigenous hockey programming and any inclusion and diversity initiatives. Members will be able to access the funding application at HockeyAlberta.ca.
"We would like to thank the EOCF for their generous donation, as these funds will help grow the Every Kid Every Community grant program in Northern Alberta through the member grant program. It is through partnerships such as this that the Hockey Alberta Foundation and Hockey Alberta can keep growing and providing kids access to the game in communities throughout Alberta," said Dennis Zukiwsky, Chairperson, Hockey Alberta Foundation.
Throughout the pandemic, volunteers have been the backbone of minor hockey. To thank the volunteers, the EOCF and HAF have formed the Hockey Alberta volunteer recognition/thank you program. Coaches, parents and players will have an opportunity to be inspired by the Edmonton Oilers or Edmonton Oil Kings by attending games and getting more connected to the teams.
The HAF works to inspire every kid in every community’s passion for hockey. In collaboration with the EOCF, the HAF can continue to grow the game in Northern Alberta.