This summer I shared information about Fuelling Women Champions (FWC) which is a national, multi-year initiative spearheaded by Canada’s dairy farmers. With this initiative, attention is focused on the advancement of women in sport, by financially assisting selected applicants with monetary grants.
Female athletes, teams and organizations all across Canada applied for the grant, and 30 have now been chosen. I had the pleasure of reading through the profiles of the chosen grant winners, and it only reaffirmed what I truly love about the Champions Fund – and that is the diversity of passion of women in sport.
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good story about a dedication to any sport, yet so much attention is on the most well-known and popular sports. Lack of finances might impair any sport, yet when it comes to outside support, I can only assume the assistance is even less for a unique and less-known sporting activity.
For instance, one grant winner is Amanda Timm from Canmore, Alberta – and her sport in Sit Skiing. When reading Amanda’s application request, my heart swelled at both her story and the realization that participating in this sport would take more of a financial hit than traditional skiing.
Here’s her story:
HOW WOULD A $5,000 CHAMPIONS FUND GRANT HELP YOU OR YOUR ORGANIZATION ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS IN SPORT?: In 2011 I broke my back in a big mountain ski competition that paralyzed me from the chest down, within 10 months I got back on snow but in a sit ski. Now I compete in competitions but in a sit ski which has never been done before. This funding wiIl help me carve a new way for women and sit skiers.
WHAT FINANCIAL CHALLENGES AFFECT YOUR ABILITY TO TAKE PART IN SPORT OR YOUR ORGANIZATION? Adaptive equipment is ridiculously and unfairly priced, it is not mass produced everything’s is very highly priced. This makes simply being in a wheelchair, something I did not ask for, very expensive and hard to take part in any sport. It does not help that I’m a student just trying to get by.
WHAT BOUNDARIES WOULD YOU LIKE TO OVERCOME OR SEE OVERCOME FOR WOMEN IN SPORT? There should be no limit set on any person other than themselves. My main goal for promoting skiing is to illuminate the astigmatism around wheelchairs that most people have. Not only am I sit skier, I am a female sit skier which is a rare thing, I want to promote it to get more people out doing it.
SPORTS ARE IMPORTANT TO ME BECAUSE… Sports are important to me because they are where I am the most outgoing and confident version of myself. When I broke my back I became introverted and didn’t think I could ever do sports again. Now sports is what I relay on to stay healthy and bond with my friends. I refuse to be left behind.
Amanda is just one grant winner in the 2017 Champions Fund, and one of thirty examples of pure goodness. I’m sure it’s difficult picking just 30 out of so many deserving applicants, yet because of this initiative, that’s thirty more young women and teams are able to continue in their athletic goals.
The Champions Fund is a wonderful resource for young women, and one that gives opportunity to achieve goals and continue sport – long after so many quit for various reasons, one being budget restrictions.
It’s been heartwarming to follow this year’s initiative, and it’s given me so much pride and hope for female athletes. That being said, I very much hope that there’s a call-out for applications in 2018, so that even more dreams are given that push toward reality.
This is a sponsored post. As always, all opinions are my own