A local charity serving youth received a much needed boost early in April.
KidSport Stettler hosted their Spring Fling event on April 9, with much fanfare.
The organization provides grants to help cover costs of registration fees so that all youth under 18 years old can get involved with organized sport.
While the Stettler chapter is locally run and organized, KidSport Stettler is part of a national organization which provides youth the opportunity to be involved in sports.
However, the Stettler chapter operates a little different than other chapters.
Where most chapters max out around $250 per grant, Stettler accepts applications for grants of up to $750 per year, per child for organized sports, with the funds raised and used within the community.
“This community is extremely giving,” said Laurie Myshaniuk, a volunteer with the organization.
According to Myshaniuk, 90 per cent of the funds used by the organization are raised in the town and county of Stettler.
Since its founding in 2003, over 2,100 Stettler youth have benefited from the KidSport grants.
The KidSport Spring Fling was the first big event the organization has held since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and was put together with relatively short notice.
Organization for the event began shortly after the province began relaxing health restrictions at the beginning of March, leaving barely five weeks to get everything organized.
“We got it done,” said Myshaniuk.
Held at the community hall, the evening consisted of a dinner, live and silent auctions and a dance.
“Everyone had a great time,” said Myshaniuk.
According to Myshaniuk, the event sold out with 250 tickets sold and succeeded in raising around $63,000.
The Spring Fling event is usually held every two years as a fundraiser by KidSport Stettler, however the 2020 event — scheduled for late March that year — was cancelled due to the onset of the pandemic.
Always a good fundraiser, the 2018 version of the event —the last one held — raised $49,000.
Families not having the finances to get their children involved in organized sports can apply for a KidSport grant several ways.
According to Myshaniuk, most organizations in Stettler can help parents with the paperwork, KidSport forms are available at the Stettler Recreation Centre and parents can apply online at the kidsportcanada.ca Stettler website by clicking the “apply for a grant” button.
Myshaniuk did note that being volunteer-run, it does take time to process the applications that come in, though the online applications do seem to get processed faster than the printed ones.