The hardest thing for Michelle Taylor was having to continually say no to her nine-year-old son, Isaiah, who just wanted to play hockey. It’s not that she didn’t want him playing the sport, it’s that – like many other families – she simply couldn’t afford it. It wasn’t until Taylor came across KidSport online and applied for assistance, that she was able to enrol her son in his favourite sport.
KidSport covered the registration fees for Isaiah to join a team. Taylor, a full-time nurse and mother of four, says she’s grateful for reaching out for help in a time of need:
“Just to see him smile and be active and wanting to always be out on the ice … KidSport has been such a blessing and I’m so thankful to the team for allowing this.”
Kevin Webster, executive director of KidSport Calgary, says giving parents an opportunity to say ‘yes’ is what the organization is all about.
“For many of these families, it’s dealing with bigger issues that they’re faced with, and when they know they can enrol their kid into a sport and not have to worry about the cost – it’s a real weight lifted for them” says Webster.
That’s why events like the Human Bonspiel are vital to organizations like KidSport. The annual winter event encourages companies to put on their winter gear and slide across the Olympic Plaza rink on an inner tube, all for the sake of Calgary kids having an opportunity to get in the game.
Isaiah – a young expert of the game – can tell you almost any fact about the NHL. But the best part about hockey for Isaiah is being on a team. Isaiah shows his passion about each aspect of hockey while he tells reporters about all the positions he’s played.
“I’ve tried all positions,” Isaiah says. “My favourite is centre, because you get to win the face-offs.”
- By Deanna Tucker and Simran Sachar