EDMONTON, AB – The Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation (EOCF) has announced that Oilers alumni Chris Joseph, Georges Laraque and Ladislav Smid are the community ambassadors of the "Every Kid Deserves a Shot" initiative, helping inspire youth across Oil Country with the transformative power of hockey.

"We are honoured to announce Chris, Georges and Ladi as the ambassadors of Every Kid Deserves a Shot," said Myrna Khan, Executive Director, EOCF. "We sought out individuals who understand Oil Country, have a history with the team, the Foundation and the larger OEGSE organization, and have actively participated with countless organizations in the community. We cannot think of three people who better represent all of these qualities.

"With the support of our new ambassadors and community partners Free Play for Kids, the Hockey Alberta Foundation, KidSport and Sport Central, we have no doubt Every Kid Deserves a Shot will change the lives of thousands of kids and families across Oil County as we aim to triple the number of kids impacted through the Foundation."

"We love doing things in Oil Country, working with the kids and programs," said Joseph, the former Oilers defenceman. "I just love the fact that it gives kids that don't get the opportunities a chance to be part of a team, which we all love."

"We're in Canada, hockey is a national sport, and unfortunately, there's so many kids that just don't have the opportunity to be playing the sport that they all love," said Laraque, the fan-favourite pugilist. "They get to watch it on TV, but now the fact that they're going to have a chance to be playing and get resources. We have to get kids active, get them to play sports, get to know other kids and have fun. So that's why it was a no-brainer for us to be part of it."

"I have three kids at home and all three are playing sports, but they don't understand how fortunate they are," said Smid, another former Oilers blueliner. "When I was asked to be an ambassador, I explained to my kids that we are very fortunate, but there are a lot of families who are not as fortunate as we are. I want the other less fortunate kids to experience the same thing because I know for myself, it makes my day when I see my kids happy, so if I can help in any way to do the same for the other kids, I'm going to be right there."

Through a portfolio of complementary investments and programs, Every Kid Deserves a Shot aims to triple the number of kids involved in sports in the community. By fostering a broad coalition of support, including fans, sponsors, players and community partners, Every Kid Deserves a Shot seeks to become a lasting symbol of hope, inclusivity and empowerment, ensuring every child in Oil Country has the opportunity to thrive.

Beyond hockey, Every Kid Deserves a Shot will address crucial building blocks including resilience, nutrition, education and belonging. The current community partners for Every Kid Deserves a Shot are Free Play for Kids, the Hockey Alberta Foundation, KidSport and Sport Central.

From January 31 to February 21, the Oilers 50/50 raffles will be in support of the Every Kid Deserves a Shot initiative. These raffles will feature more than 20 prizes, including multiple cash prizes, premium Oilers tickets, gift cards, concert tickets and a life-changing jackpot.

Starting February 1, customers who purchase $100 or more in 50/50 tickets will receive $25 to Boston Pizza and a $25 sports bet with Play Alberta. In addition, customers can purchase NHL All-Star raffle tickets and receive $15 to Levelwear.

Tickets for the Oilers 50/50 and the NHL All-Star raffle, with a current jackpot over $470,000, can be purchased at The All-Star bonus draw is February 3 at 11:00 PM MT.