May 28, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The provincial government is investing $50,000 in a program that encourages and removes obstacles for children in need to become more physically active through participation in sport and recreation.
Wellness, Culture and Sport Minister Hédard Albert announced the investment in the Canadian Tire Foundation for Families JumpStart program.
"To be a self-sufficient province, we must be a well province, and physical activity is an important component of overall wellness," Albert said. "Programs such as Canadian Tire JumpStart help ensure that all children have an opportunity to participate in sport and recreation, regardless of their financial situation."
Albert made the announcement at the Boys and Girls Club of Fredericton, one of the affiliate partners of the JumpStart program. Other provincial affiliate partners are Recreation New Brunswick, the YMCA, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and KidSport.
"We know that one in three parents in Canada cannot afford to enrol their kids in sports and recreational activities," said Dan Thompson, president, Canadian Tire JumpStart. "Thanks to the generosity of the provincial government, we will be able to help address the barrier to access for New Brunswick children so that they may experience the benefits of physical activity, including developing important life skills and self-confidence."
Canadian Tire JumpStart is a community-based charitable program that helps children in need participate in organized sports and recreation. National in scope, but local in its focus, the program is delivered through local chapters along with community partners.
"At the Boys and Girls Club of Fredericton, we have seen the tremendous success of the Canadian Tire JumpStart Program," said Karen MacAlpine, executive director. "In the past two years, nearly 100 youths from our organization have participated in recreation-based activities through funding received on their behalf from the JumpStart Program. Finding creative ways to keep our youth active is vitally important as we strive to combat childhood obesity."
The chapters work to identify children in need in the local community and provide funds to cover the cost associated with organized sports and recreation, including registration, transportation and equipment. There are 13 Canadian Tire JumpStart chapters in New Brunswick, and to date these chapters have given more than 5,430 children the chance to play.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Danielle Phillips, communications, Department of Wellness, Culture and Sport, 506-457-6445; Lisa Gibson, media and public relations, Canadian Tire, 416-544-7655.