By Lawrence Loiseau
The First Shift Program – a joint venture between Hockey Canada, Bauer and Canadian Tire – will be offered in 100 Mile House again.
Children, whose families may not be able to afford to pay for hockey, now have a much greater chance to play Canada’s favourite game.
First Shift is a six-week program that offers ice hockey lessons and a full set of free equipment (including brand new skates) for six to 10 year olds for a total cost of $200.
Kirsty Toews, 100 Mile and District Minor Hockey Association (OMDMHA) office administrator says she is happy to see here again.
“100 Mile Minor Hockey is very proud to have been selected to host the First Shift program for the second year. It’s a great introduction to hockey for kids without being put onto or pressured onto a team right away.”
This years program begins on Nov. 7. The lucky players get on-ice instruction in the package, which includes six one-hour ice sessions.
Although this year’s program is full, it looks like First Shift will be held in 100 Mile House again next season. It is important to remember that registrants cannot have been signed up to minor hockey previously.
Mark Oct. 17 on your calendar as there will be an all-important fitting of equipment at the 100 Mile House Recreation Centre at 5:45 to 7 p.m. Children will not only get to try on their brand new gear, but even meet some of 100 Mile Wranglers, who will attend the festive occasion.
The compassionate philosophy of First Shift stresses not only affordability but also a positive attitude, team work and leadership.
As stated on its website www.thefirstshift.ca, the goal of the national program is to “break down barriers to entry by offering a program that is accessible, affordable, and most importantly fun.”
The charitable program kicked off in Ontario and Nova Scotia in 2014. As BC Hockey reports, there are now more than 140 First Shift programs this winter throughout the provinces and territories (www.bchockey.net).