Manitoba curling club calling on other recreation programs to help out Ukrainian refugees

A Manitoba curling club is looking to make life easier for Ukrainian refugees coming to the province and it is calling on other recreation programs to do the same.

Robin Jackson, a volunteer board member with the Petersfield Curling Club, said they have decided to waive all registration fees for Ukrainian refugees who wish to participate in any programs they offer.

“We’re seeing families and individuals arriving in our community from Ukraine and we really can’t even begin to imagine what their experience has been like or what hurdles or challenges lie before them as they transition to life in Canada,” said Jackson.

She added that some of the families that are coming to the province have kids who will need to be involved in activities to help them grow and connect with others.

“We’ve seen a few families arrive within our area or surrounding areas already. We don’t know how many people are going to be ready to take advantage of those opportunities, but just in the event if they do, or their children do, we want them to have the opportunity to participate and make the connections in our community that cares.”

Jackson said this initiative isn’t about promoting just curling either, she wants to see all sport and recreation programs to follow their lead and help remove a small hurdle for the refugees.

“There is proven benefits to an individual’s well-being when they are surrounded by a community that cares and provided with those opportunities. It doesn’t just rest with curling, it doesn’t rest with just our community. It really is about increasing those opportunities for people who might be in need to make those connections wherever they relocate to.”

For those who are looking for information about the curling club and registering, Jackson said it will be shared online.

She noted the next curling season is a few months away. When registration does ramp up again, she said they plan on reaching out to the families who are helping refugees and offer the programing and ensure they have everything they would need to participate.

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