A local initiative that helps deliver used hockey equipment to youth in Canada’s north is back for the 16th year.
The Skate North Program was started by Onoway resident Bob Walker in 2005 after a trip to the Northwest Territories, where he saw kids in northern communities couldn’t afford decent hockey or skating equipment to use. Walker says basic necessity items like food are very expensive, so most families can’t purchase sports items.
Now, every February Walker goes to thrift stores in Whitecourt, Mayerthorpe, and Onoway and collects used equipment, which is then taken to Edmonton with the help of volunteers and Whitecourt Transport. From there it’s flown to communities in the Territories by Air North.
Walker says the volunteers help make the program successful every year.
People wishing to donate items can do so today and tomorrow. Walker will be collecting equipment for transport this Wednesday, February 12th.
Photos courtesy of Bob Walker.