The 2017 WISE Fund recipients, supported by their respective National Sport Organizations, are as follows:
- Alberta Soccer Association (Canada Soccer)
- Kingston Field Hockey Club (Field Hockey Canada)
- Lauren Kucera (Alpine Canada)
- Lisa Myers (Canada Wheelchair Sports Association)
- Melfort Minor Softball Association (Softball Canada)
- NWT Judo Association (Judo Canada)
- Rugby Nova Scotia (Rugby Canada)
- Team Saskatchewan Volleyball North American Indigenous Games 2017 (Volleyball Canada)
- Tiburon Waterpolo (Water Polo Canada)
- Triathlon Manitoba (Triathlon Canada)
Alberta Soccer Association
Supported by: Canada Soccer
The Alberta Soccer Association’s Development of Women in Soccer Committee encourages and inspires women to play, coach, and lead in soccer. In May 2017, they are hosting a development conference for women across Alberta with a goal of increasing the number of women participating and leading in soccer in the province. The conference will provide participants opportunities to connect with others in the soccer community and to gain professional development in a welcoming and supportive environment. As part of this conference, women can participate in a variety of female-only NCCP certification coaching courses as well as an entry level referee course. The WISE Fund grant will help Alberta Soccer to cover costs for this conference, as well as to subsidize participant costs to help ensure this conference is accessible for those who wish to attend.
Kingston Field Hockey Club
Sport: Field Hockey
Supported by: Field Hockey Canada
The Kingston Field Hockey Club offers programming for a broad spectrum of females, ranging from ages 13-50. Recognizing a need to grow the sport of field hockey in the Kingston area, they have begun to target younger girls with several key initiatives. In the past two years they have introduced a U14 Learn to Play program, as well as a U16 Train to Train program. A Train to Train indoor hockey program is also being offered this year for the first time. The WISE fund will primarily go towards expanding programming for girls aged 18 and under. Programs they would like to develop in the future include: U12 Fundamentals, U14 Learn to Train, and U16 Train to Train. The fund will also help with the expense of turf rentals, junior sized field hockey sticks and competition entry fees.
Supported by: Alpine Canada
As the Sport Development Manager for Canada Ski Cross, Lauren Kucera is currently devoting a large percentage of her time to supporting their NextGen program in Calgary, AB. This one-of-a-kind, centralized program consists of mainly females, aged 17 to 25, and aims to continue Canada’s legacy of producing dominant ski cross athletes. As the only female staff member at Canada Ski Cross, Kucera feels a responsibility to promote and increase not only female participation in the sport, but at the coaching level as well. She serves as a mentor for her young athletes and is dedicated to ensuring that they feel empowered to pursue their dreams. Kucera will use the WISE grant to further her coaching education by completing her Performance Level Certification through the Canadian Ski Coaching Federation. This continued training would allow her to provide a more comprehensive approach to coaching these elite athletes.
Sport: Para Athletics
Supported by: Canada Wheelchair Sports Association
Lisa Myers has worked as a coordinator with the BC Wheelchair Sports Association (BCWSA) and their wheelchair athletics program since 2012. She has also served as the Provincial Seated Throws Coach since 2013, and has overseen 4 BCWSA provincial teams at the Canadian Track and Field Championships. In 2016, she managed the largest provincial team in BCWSA history, where her athletes swept the podium in the men’s seated throws discus event. Myers has been extremely active in the development of para-athletics education in BC, dedicating her time to providing NCCP technical courses for both coaches and officials. She organized BCWSA’s Girls Only Time weekend event, allowing girls aged 12-21 with a disability the opportunity to participate in a variety of different activities, as well as connect with female mentors in the community. Myers has been selected to be a volunteer Wheelchair Event Coach with Athletics Canada at the 2017 IPC World ParaAthletics Championships in London, UK. The WISE Fund grant will be put toward obtaining her Performance Coach Certification, a prerequisite for this position, allowing her to accept this amazing opportunity to advance her career.
Melfort Minor Softball Association
Supported by: Softball Canada
The Melfort Minor Softball Association (MMSA) offers opportunities for girls to develop their skills and play softball in the city of Melfort, Saskatchewan. They have recently implemented a Learn to Play program for girls aged 6-8. The program serves to introduce the sport of softball to young children while also developing their fundamental movement skills and physical fitness levels. The fund will support the development of the Learn to Play program with purchases like specialized equipment for age-appropriate skill development and physical literacy. Examples of some of this equipment would be throwing targets, hula-hoops, safety bats, whiffle balls, helmets, and throw down bases. It will also go towards a year-end gathering for the respected age group in regards to the prizes. The WISE Fund will also help to subsidize the cost of fees for participants to encourage higher enrolment in the program.
NWT Judo Association
Supported by: Judo Canada
The NWT Judo Association’s main mission is to actively promote the sport of judo within the Northwest Territories, as well as all of the values that are integral to the sport. They plan to use the WISE Fund to deliver two new programs focusing on the Active for Life stage of the LTAD model. They aspire to promote the leadership of women within their organization by running weekly sessions discussing obstacles to female participation in the sport, and strategies to overcome them. They will also run a biweekly women/girl’s only judo class, to act as a positive introduction to judo. The fund will support the cost of the facility, as well as fees for the volunteer coaches and leaders. Additional money will be used to introduce a social aspect to the women-only class and provide networking opportunities.
Rugby Nova Scotia
Supported by: Rugby Canada
Rugby Nova Scotia is highly dedicated to the development and progression of the sport of rugby within their province. In partnership with the Nova Scotia Rugby Referee Society, they would like to offer a Level 1 Referee course for women with a focus on the Active for Life stage. The ultimate goal is to encourage women to stay engaged in the sport despite existing barriers, and highlight the advantages of serving as an official. This will provide women with an opportunity to develop their leadership skills, as well as create a mentorship program between existing referees and new recruits. The fund will be used to subsidize a portion of the cost of the course for participants with the goal of incentivizing this path for women. They will also offer further referee training sessions and subsidize development opportunities for their current female referees.
Team Saskatchewan Volleyball North American Indigenous Games 2017
Supported by: Volleyball Canada
Team Saskatchewan Volleyball will be competing at the North American Indigenous Games in Toronto this coming July. Team Coach, Cory Gratton has recognized an opportunity to affect change in the broader community through sport and female empowerment, starting with his team of promising young women. The WISE Fund will go toward training these Team Saskatchewan athletes to obtain their Coaching Level 1 Certification. By investing in their development as leaders and coaches, this effort will not only expand opportunities for these young women, it will also help them to use their passion and skills to create positive change in their communities through sport.
Sport: Water Polo
Supported by: Water Polo Canada
Club Tiburon is a non-profit organization with the goal of promoting team spirit and physical activity through the sport of water polo. Aware of the low participation numbers of girls in the sport, they partnered with several local clubs (CASO & CHAOS CDN) to form a women/girl’s only team. Due to their efforts, female enrolment has more than doubled in just 2 years. This well-rounded club offers instruction to those from 5 years old through to seniors in their mixed league. Club Tiburon’s female athletes have gone on to compete provincially, as well as train at the national level. They have recently redeveloped their teams to give women and girls different competing and training options specific to their LTAD stages. The introduction of girls-only practices as well as entry into a variety of leagues over the past 2 years has increased the club’s overall expenses. The WISE fund will predominantly help to offset the cost of tournament entry fees for their competing athletes.
Supported by: Triathlon Canada
Triathlon Manitoba is a not-for-profit organization that governs the sport of triathlon in the province of Manitoba. For the 2017 race season, they will be implementing a Women’s Only Triathlon, that will be open to all females ages eight and up. The triathlon will allow an opportunity for all interested women and girls to participate in a secure and enjoyable environment, with the hopes that this will spark an enthusiasm for future participation in the sport. This Women’s Only Triathlon will be held on Sunday, May 14th, 2017 – Mother’s Day–and will take place at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg. In advance of this event, they will also be hosting a full day Women’s Only Triathlon Clinic. The clinic will be facilitated by notable female triathlon coaches and will include sessions on the three components of a triathlon – swim, bike, and run. The WISE Fund will help to offset the costs of the facility for both the clinic and the triathlon, honorariums for the facilitators and officials, as well as supporting promotional materials.