Advertisement

Truck full of sporting gear donations for families leaves Edmonton for NWT

Click to play video: 'Truck full of sporting gear donations for families leaves Edmonton for NWT' Truck full of sporting gear donations for families leaves Edmonton for NWT
Thousands of pieces of sporting equipment left Edmonton Saturday, starting a more than 3,000-kilometre trek north. The items are meant to help give kids living in remote communities the chance to play sports. Nicole Stillger explains. – Jul 10, 2021

A transport truck filled with thousands of pieces of sporting gear left Edmonton Saturday — starting a more than 3,000-kilometre trek to the Northwest Territories.

“This is just the start,” explained Sport Central executive director Sheldon Oleksyn.

“It’s going to another terminal at Matco, then Matco Moving is taking it to Hay River, then at Hay River it gets on a barge at a ferry terminal, then it starts heading up the Mackenzie River and stops at a multitude of communities along the way.”

Read more: Edmontonians encouraged to donate used skating equipment for kids in need

Roughly 4,500 pieces of equipment for a variety of sports like soccer, hockey and baseball will be distributed to roughly 1,400 kids and teens in Norman Wells, Fort MacPherson and Tuktoyaktuk.

Story continues below advertisement
A transport truck filled with thousands of pieces of sporting gear left Edmonton Saturday, July 10, 2021, starting a more than 3,000-kilometre trek to the Northwest Territories. Sports Central has been organizing donation drives like this for close to two decades. Global News

“We’ve had an unprecedented amount of equipment that’s been given to us during the pandemic,” Oleksyn said.

Preparations to deliver this haul started months ago and included conversations with RCMP officers and recreation directors in each of the three communities.

One of the only ways to deliver to these remote areas, other than by plane, is by barge on the Mackenzie River and only two barge shipments happen per year.

The last one leaves Hay River on July 18. The equipment won’t arrive in Tuktoyaktuk until Aug. 5 at the earliest.

Click to play video: 'Sport Central launches Dave’s Drive to round up sports equipment for kids' Sport Central launches Dave’s Drive to round up sports equipment for kids
Sport Central launches Dave’s Drive to round up sports equipment for kids – Nov 16, 2020

“There’s a lot of kids up there, a lot of families up there, but not a whole bunch of things like hockey equipment  — affordable hockey equipment — affordable sports equipment,” volunteer Duncan Galloway said.

Story continues below advertisement

Read more: Sport Central launches Dave’s Drive to round up sports equipment for kids

Sport Central has been at the helm of projects like this for close to two decades, helping dozens of communities across Alberta and further north.

“When a child is introduced into sport, it’s not something they have to stop, because the equipment for it they either outgrow or the equipment isn’t available,” Oleksyn said.

“We really take the long-term view for these programs.”

Click to play video: 'Sport Central seeking gently-used sport equipment and cash donations' Sport Central seeking gently-used sport equipment and cash donations
Sport Central seeking gently-used sport equipment and cash donations – Oct 1, 2019

Sponsored content