Chestermere’s Scotiabank is sponsoring the Chestermere Minor Hockey Association with a cheque for $1,000 and some swag for the players including uniform patches, toques and bags.
“Anytime somebody steps up in the community and helps us provide that outlet for kids, it’s fantastic,” said CMHA Vice President Chris Wallin.
“Scotiabank is a big supporter of hockey in Canada,” he said.
The bank’s sponsorship stretches from the NHL down to minor hockey.
“We’ve supported junior hockey with the world juniors, we were a major contributor to the world cup,” said Scotiabank Small Business Advisor Greg Moffatt.
He said that by supporting minor hockey in the community Scotiabank is able to act like a local business even though it is a large international company.
“Minor hockey allows the big bank to…act like a smaller institution,” said Moffatt.
“They bring it down to the local level whereby they provide some funds that goes to CMHA which will be used to help out families,” said Wallin.
Scotiabank has been a major sponsor of Chestermere minor hockey for over 15 years, Moffatt has been a part of the bank’s sponsorship efforts for the last two years.
“Hockey, it’s such a huge part of the Canadian culture,” said Moffatt.
Chestermere has 33 CMHA hockey teams with a total of 450 players. The kids range in age from three-year-old to 21.
They play in everything from Tiny Mites up to Junior C.
Wallin said all the players will really enjoy the swag that Scotiabank is providing.
“The kids will be happy to take their…bags and their toques,” he said.
One of the most exciting things included in the sponsorship package for the kids are entry forms to the Scotiabank Skaters contest.
The winner of the contest gets to hit the ice with the Calgary Flames.
“They get to skate out with the flag with the Flames at the singing of the National anthem,” said Moffatt.
The financial donation, will help the CMHA to support families hit by the downturn that can’t afford all the fees involved with playing minor hockey.
The donation from Scotiabank will be added to the association’s Short Handed Fund and will be used to help pay the fees of players whose families can’t afford them.
Annual fees to play starts at $325 for Tiny Mite and go up to $2,500 for PeeWee AA.
“We give lots of kids the chance to participate in sports, learn some life skills,” said Wallin.
“It helps them develop all kinds of life skills, leadership skills being part of a team,” said Moffatt, “it allows them to get those teamwork skills.”
Additionally, support for the CMHA has a ripple effect in the community.
“We’re the biggest users of the rec centre,” said Wallin.
“So the more people we can keep going through the rec centre, the better,” he said.