Richmond KidSport has announced it will continue to accept and review applications but not issue cheques to clubs on behalf of families until sports resumes after the COVID-19 pandemic.
The policy is consistent with all 42 KidSport chapters across the province.
“We do not take this decision lightly, but do so only to reduce the administrative burden (refunds and adjustments) on volunteers across the sport system,” said Richmond KidSport chair Bob Jackson. “As soon as sport resumes, we will forward cheques to sport clubs on the child's behalf so that they can begin to play.
“In the meantime, we encourage all children to find ways to keep working on your sport skills and physical fitness at home so that you are ready to hit the playing field when sport returns.”
The organization held its seventh annual Creating Community Champions benefit last month at the Hilton Vancouver Airport Hotel, raising $75,000 to help make sports more affordable for children.
The evening included recognizing Hilton Vancouver Airport Hotel general manager Sanjeet Sadana as the 2020 recipient of Sport BC’s KidSport Community Champion award.
It was the Richmond resident’s idea to launch of a signature fundraiser gala with the hotel providing the venue, catering, staff and planning rooms at no cost so Richmond KidSport could retain all revenues as fund-raising profit. At the time, Sadana learned the chapter was low on funds at a Richmond Sports Council meeting.
Since then, $350,000 has been raised from the community champions benefit and the chapter now provides a maximum annual grant of $600 per child.
Jackson was also recognized for his outstanding and tireless work as the initial recipient of the Richmond KidSport’s own Robert A. Jackson Community Champions Award named in his honour.
In 2019, Richmond KidSport provided financial assistance to 199 boys and 190 girls to participate in 46 community sports organizations.