On Wednesday, the Lethbridge 2020 Alberta Summer Games Society announced that nearly three dozen nonprofits would receive a total of $ 276,141.61 in funding.
The games were canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and instead of reimbursing sponsors, the money was donated to help support community, cultural, sports and school organizations.
Additionally, the money raised through the volunteer casino fundraisers went towards the grant.
“It was a difficult decision (to cancel the games) and I fought to the end, but we finally decided that enough was enough and that we would have to drop that project,” said games president Rick Blakeley.
“These people can do something special for their groups.”
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Darren Williams, president of the Lethbridge BMX Association, said they couldn’t have made their track updates without this support.
The group received $ 40,000, which will help bring the facility up to standards and ready to host its provincial event in 2022.
“It was a huge surprise for us to receive this amount of money, we cannot thank the Lethbridge Sport Council enough for (helping) make this happen,” said Williams.
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Forty applicants applied for funding, but only 32 were chosen. Most of the organizations are in Lethbridge, but others serve Crowsnest Pass, Taber, Raymond, and other parts of southern Alberta.
“This will help many less fortunate children who participate in and benefit from organized sport,” said Matt Neufeld, recipient of the funding, from KidSport Lethbridge & Taber. “It’s a very large number for our small community and we are very excited to be a part of it.”
“Our team took a big hit during COVID, we lost a lot of players, we lost a lot of fundraising opportunities, so this gives us the boost we need to prepare and start recruiting and planning for the upcoming season,” said Nicole Van Rootselaar with the Lethbridge Steel women’s soccer ball.
TO full list of grant recipients and sponsors it can be found on the Lethbridge Sport Council website.
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