Each season, the MLSE Foundation provides grants to community level charitable organizations across the GTA. Last year, we granted over $ 400,000 dollars to these partners. The MLSE Foundation prides itself on our sport partnerships where we will continue to work with these partners throughout the year to provide more sport opportunities and experiences for the kids in the programs.
Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office
Breakaway Hockey Program
In providing an opportunity for children to learn life skills such as teamwork, self-confidence, and respect, the Breakaway Hockey Program enhances pride in the community through increased access to playing hockey. Through the community’s trusted centre, Breakaway Hockey also provides supplemental access to programs such as academic tutoring and healthy living. Ultimately, this program will lead to the creation of a hockey team at Thorncliffe Elementary School in the future.
In partnership with Sunlife Financial’s “Helping Buds Program,” the MLSE Foundation proudly supports the hockey grant recipient of the Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office, giving the recipient the ability to grow the program and create more accessibility for underprivileged South Asian youth.
“Helping Buds” also provides program participants special opportunities with the Toronto Maple Leafs; youth and families are able to watch the Leafs in a community suite and participate in on-ice hockey clinics at the Air Canada Centre where they can learn from Toronto Maple Leafs players.
Autism Ontario York Region Chapter
Autism Ontario Kids Camp (AOK Camp) provides valuable summer day camping experiences for children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ADS) who are unable to attend other community camps due to specified support that cannot be provided. By offering unique opportunities that allow campers to participate in as many active programs throughout the summer as possible, AOK Camp aims to decrease destructive behaviors and anxieties, while also promoting active lifestyles.
Mentoring Through Sports
This organization helps youth in low-income communities’ graduate high school and successfully transition into post- secondary education or training. Pathways to Education is receiving funding for their ‘Mentoring through Sports’ program. This program’s holistic approach aims to help students stay in school through group mentoring, broadening interests and talents of students while providing a positive sense of belonging to a peer group.
Toronto Lords Community Association
Toronto Lords Basketball Program
This program uses the Canada Basketball Long Term Athlete Development Model to focus on improving health and wellness of young men and women age 10-18, who live primarily in low-income, at-risk neighbourhoods in Toronto. Regardless of financial circumstances, the Toronto Lords Basketball Program provides access to educational and athletic programming to all. The program helps youth develop leadership skills, self- esteem and discipline. Participants will improve their health and wellness while having fun and developing friendships in a safe and encouraging environment.
UST: Squashing the Stereotypes
This program directly reaches youth in the Jane & Finch area to provide alternate after- school options that are positive and healthy. The sport of squash is used as a vehicle to help students learn about decision- making, commitment, hard work and discipline. UST cognitively assesses all of their students and provides them with personalized learning plans that will help to improve academic performance, increase high school graduation rates, and promote entry into post- secondary education.
The Mentoring For Violence Prevention (MVP) Program
The MVP program was developed in order to address ongoing concerns around violence amongst youth residing in the Regent Park community. It is a unique program that uses sport and recreation as a gateway to foster deeper relationships with at-risk and/or vulnerable youth in order to provide enhanced support to them. Through participation in sports such as ice hockey, cricket, soccer, softball and basketball, young people from the Regent Park community are coming together to engage in healthy play with their peers, while participating in anti- violence awareness and educational activities, as well as one- to- one mentoring.
Grandravine Special Program
Hockey Is For Everyone
The Grandravine hockey program provides the Skills Development Program to teach beginners how to skate along with fundamental hockey skills. In this program, volunteer coaches are often working one- on- one with the players to give them the support they need to achieve their goals. Registration fees are kept to the lowest level possible, making it feasible for everyone to play; many of the youth participating come from group homes and/or are from single parent families who face financial challenges. Hockey Is For Everyone has athletes participate in The Special Hockey International tournament, a mini-Olympics for the athletes that gives them a sense of pride and self- confidence.
Play It Smart
The Play It Smart program runs through Centennial College and brings together children from the Malvern and Kingston/Galloway area to engage in fun and free ways of learning. The activities provided start with one hour of tutoring, which requires the kids to bring their homework to each session. Afterwards, the kids are provided with a nutritious snack before engaging in team-building exercises such as basketball.
Bridging Communities and Police through Athletics (BCPA)
The BCPA program engages at-risk youth, police, and community partners in various sports to increase the physical activity of youth while creating stronger relationships between the three groups. ProAction programs provide youth with sports, police mentors, and community supporters to offset risk factors in order to build more active youth and safer communities.