May 16, 2018 3:01 pm

Skate to Great arrives in London to support Big Brothers, Big Sisters

Skate to Great donates hockey equipment to kids in need.

Jaclyn Carbone/980 CFPL
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A charitable organization is helping Big Brothers, Big Sisters London stock up on skates, helmets and sticks.

It all started back in 2012 when Evan Kosiner had the idea to collect used skates, helmets and sticks and have them donated to various charities, community programs and schools across the country.

READ MORE: London to host Hockey Canada Foundation gala in 2018


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Kosiner is the co-founder and chair of Skate to Great, which started with a conversation between himself and Olympian Katilyn Weaver.

“We saw there was a lot of different organizations across the country that could use skates, but there wasn’t sort of one organization making and facilitating them getting them. We started Skate To Great as a sustainable way that people could donate their used skates and get them to kids who could use them.”

Donations are being accepted until May 31, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday at the FedEx ship station at Exter Road, or at to Siskinds Law Firm on Waterloo Street.

All donations will be passed on to kids from Big Brothers, Big Sisters London.

Skate for Great collects used skates, helmets, and sticks to donate to various charities, community programs and schools.

Jaclyn Carbone/980 CFPL

Development supervisor for Big Brothers, Big Sisters London, Anne-Marie Rodger, told 980 CFPL they don’t typically get donations of equipment.

“To be able to provide these kids an extra opportunity, whether it’s activities or equipment like this, it means a lot,” she explained.

“It’s not just skates and equipment we’re talking about. It’s the whole opportunity to be able to get on the ice and practice a sport that they might not have access to.”

READ MORE: National skate drive comes to Toronto

Londoner and defenceman for the San Jose Sharks, Dylan DeMelo, was at the kick-off event and said it’s important to give kids opportunities they might not have otherwise.

“Not just hockey but any sport in general. To meet new people, to try new things and maybe to find a hidden talent that might not be there without that opportunity,” he told 980 CFPL.

“You learn a lot of life lessons from sports, from hockey, it’s great to have a foundation like this,” DeMelo said.

This is DeMelo’s first year with the organization, and he added that he’s excited to give back to the community.

Skate to Great has distributed more than 30,000 pairs of skates to date.

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