For four weeks beginning in mid-January, 400 children from 20 priority Ottawa neighbourhoods will learn how to skate from qualified instructors at outdoor rinks across the city. Participating children are identified by the City of Ottawa through an application process and will receive a voucher allowing them to visit a local Canadian Tire retailer to purchase the equipment necessary to participate in the program. After its completion, all participants will be invited to visit Scotiabank Place in February for a skating party hosted by all of the event’s partners.
On Sept. 18 and 19, 10 local Canadian Tire dealers held Sens Weekend, when patrons could donate or purchase raffle tickets to help fund the Jumpstart I Love To Skate program. These monies, along with contributions from the Sens Foundation, will support the 2011 Jumpstart I Love To Skate program.
“For many children in Ottawa and in communities right across our country, the thought of skating or playing hockey on an ice rink is nothing more than a hope or a dream,” said Senators owner Eugene Melnyk. “Today’s announced partnership with Canadian Tire’s Jumpstart I Love to Skate program will not only bring that hope one step closer for hundreds of children, it will make their dreams a reality and serve as a reminder to all of us to never take the joy of skating for granted.”
“Our stores have been equipping Ottawa kids with all their hockey gear for decades, but some kids in our community are missing out,” said David McClenahan, Canadian Tire dealer and founder and board member of the Ottawa Jumpstart charity. “It's a natural fit for Canadian Tire Jumpstart to partner with Eugene Melnyk, the Sens Foundation and the City of Ottawa for the Jumpstart I Love To Skate program, which will help put hundreds of deserving kids on the ice for the first time.”
"The City of Ottawa is proud to be a partner with this unique and very important program," said Stittsville city councillor Shad Qadri. "Being Canadian and skating go hand in hand and every child deserves the opportunity to learn. I would like to congratulate the Ottawa Senators organization and Canadian Tire for bringing awareness to this tremendous initiative."
“The Sens Foundation is very proud to provide children and youth with the opportunity to participate in recreational activities who otherwise would not have the means to do so.” said Sens Foundation president Danielle Robinson. “Research shows that in addition to building healthy bodies and acquiring valuable skills, children’s involvement in sport and recreation can protect them from emotional and social problems while providing them with the opportunity to learn new skills, and develop a sense of achievement and pride.”About Canadian Tire Corporation
Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited (TSX: CTC.a, CTC) is one of Canada’s most shopped general retailers with 482 Canadian Tire stores across the country. Our core retail and automotive operation is strengthened by PartSource, an automotive parts speciality chain; Canadian Tire Petroleum, one of the country’s largest independent retailers of gasoline; Mark’s, under the banner “Clothes That Work,” a leading retailer of men’s, women’s and work apparel; and Canadian Tire Financial Services, which has issued approximately four million Canadian Tire MasterCard credit cards. More than 58,000 Canadians work across Canadian Tire’s organization from coast-to-coast in the enterprise’s retail, financial services and petroleum businesses.About Canadian tire Jumpstart
Canadian Tire Jumpstart is a national charitable program that helps financially disadvantaged kids participate in organized sport and recreation by covering registration, equipment and/or transportation costs. Since 2005, Canadian Tire Jumpstart has helped give 270,000 Canadian kids the chance to play and is still growing. To lend your support, visit Canadian Tire Jumpstart at www.canadiantire.ca/jumpstart.