Most important, I am a mom to four incredible boys. They all have their strengths and weaknesses Two are labeled "special needs" (Autism) one has a hearing impairment and one is tiny for his age.Does this stop them? Slow them down? NO! As their only source of support, I have become very involved with their passions...their excitement is just contagious! Football, music, art, computers...whatever it is, I am right there with them. It just so happens that one of my brood chose MY passion to be theirs...hockey. So n ow, I am kind of the "team mom" (team manager is my official title) to a group of 11 boys and one girl, ages 8-11 that LOVE to play hockey, but can't all afford to continue playing. That's why I need YOU.
I understand all too well, the struggle single parents, and parents of limited financial means feel everyday! The despair at having to tell our kids "no" they can't do that, or get that; even if EVERYONE else is/has it. So, when my tiny guy BEGGED to play hockey; I was determined to find a way to make it happen. I started volunteering at our rink, managing hockey teams and organizing fundraisiers. Our club is a very diverse group, we have kids that come from VERY financially secure families and families that live paycheque to paycheque...barely. Our kids are from Cleveland, Elyria, Lorain, Avon, North Olmsted, Westlake...our program is that good and it is probably the most affordable in the area. That doesn't mean it is affordable for EVERYONE.
Our club has run out of scholarship money. We hate to turn any kids away because they can't afford to play, so that is why I am here. We have several families on our team this year, that are struggling to pay for fees, let alone proper equipment, jerseys and tournaments. As manager of the team, I am constantly searching out donors, sponsors and deals with rinks for ice time, hotels and tournament fees. I also try to set up fundraisers whenever I can. However, this year, it is just not enough. Our kids fees have gone up approxomately $200 from last year, not including the $105 for the new style jerseys we need and now, we have tournament fees and hotel costs for an upcoming tournament in Detroit this November.
We are in serious danager of losing 1/3 of our team because of lack of funding. These are kids that practice 4 times a week or more. Kids that play in skates that don't fit or rental skates, with sticks that are too short and protective gear that doesn't fit properly. Yet, they are there at EVERY practice. We don't have goalie equipment either. We need to come up with the funds for that too. (We don't have a kid that plays goalie, so our kids take turns in the net and we used to have access to equipment, but not anymore.)
Please, if you can donate even $1 to help these kids continue to play hockey, our whole team would appreciate it. This is our first year as Squirts. Some of these kids, we have played with since we were in Learn to Play hockey. Losing them and their families would be like losing part of our own families. If you can help, thank you. If not, please spred the word so that others that might be able to, can.
Thank You Again!
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