IT WAS A fun hour for local blind and visually impaired students Dec. 5 at the Comox Valley Sports Centre.

Plenty of Courage in Comox Valley

Blind and partially sighted students enjoy an hour on the ice

There were smiles all around the rink when Courage Canada Hockey for the Blind visited the Comox Valley on Dec. 5.

With the assistance of the Vanier Secondary Hockey Academy, Courage executive director Matt Morrow and founder Mark DeMontis led nine locally blind or partially sighted students on a fun skate at the Comox Valley Sports Centre.

“It was great,” Morrow said. “With the weather we were worried some students might not show up. But almost everybody who signed up showed up. We had nine students and 10 helpers from the Vanier Hockey Academy.”

“We had a full hour skate with the kids. Most lasted the entire hour. I actually had to shoo some of them off, which isn’t always the case…sometimes they get tired. So it was great.”

This season, 400 youth who are blind or partially sighted in more than 25 communities from coast to coast are participating in learn to skate and Blind Hockey programs thanks to Courage and their national non-profit presenting partner, Accessible Media Inc.

A couple of programs were held here last year, and Morrow said they will be back next year. Designed for students from K-12, Morrow notes that for kids who are interested in continuing to improve their skating Courage tries to assist them with local programs.

“We’ve had pretty good success with kids signing up for traditional skating lessons.  If the coach wants to give me a call and ask for some pointers on working with a child who is blind or visually impaired, we’re happy to do that.”

Morrow said it is not unusual to see one or two students in wheelchairs at the sessions (there was one at the Courtenay stop last week).

“Often with vision impairment it is accompanied by other disabilities, so a child has multi disabilities. Just because they can’t skate standing up doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have fun going around the ice.”

Along with AMI, Courage partners with CNIB and the BC Blind Sports & Recreation Association.

Courage Canada Hockey for the Blind is a national registered charity. Established in 2008, Courage Canada has already successfully established an annual National Blind Hockey Tournament that is entering its third year, and has run more than 50 skating field trips for over 200 boys and girls in communities spanning the country from Halifax to Victoria.

Courage Canada relies 100 per cent on corporate sponsorships and donations to run their programs. To learn more, contact

Morrow at mattmorrow@couragecanada.ca or 604-812-6786, and visit couragecanada.ca.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A photo of the missing mushroom pickers from the Lil’Wat Nation near Pemberton: River Leo (left) and dad Peter Oleski. Facebook photo/Sea to Sky Road Conditions page
Two Comox Valley-based search organizations assisting in missing Pemberton mushroom pickers

Two members from the Lil’Wat Nation were last seen Oct. 22

Students at Ecole Puntledge Park Elementary kicked off the Everybody Deserves A Smile (EDAS) campaign in 2019. Scott Stanfield photo
Everybody Deserves a Smile campaign adapts to COVID-19 challenges

“We didn’t want to lose our heartfelt hands-on approach.”

Wind and waves were part of the reason why the Sail Canada High Performance Team selected HMCS Quadra as the winter training base for Tokyo 2021. Photo by Ken Dool
National sailing team prepares for Olympics at HMCS Quadra in Comox

HMCS Quadra is serving as the winter training base for the Canadian… Continue reading

Courtenay residents will have a substantial schedule change for curbside trash collection beginning in January 2021. (Ben Lypka/Black Press file)
Courtenay moving to a zone system for curbside trash collection

New system means collection days will change with every statutory holiday

A jubilant Ronna-Rae Leonard salutes the crowd at her victory party at the Avalanche Bar & Grill. (photo by Scott Stanfield)
UPDATE: Leonard declared early winner for Courtenay-Comox

NDP incumbent held similar margin of lead throughout the evening

FILE – Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides the latest update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the province during a press conference in the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, October 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. shatters COVID-19 records with 817 weekend cases; masks now expected indoors

Three people have died over the past three reporting periods

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

RCMP have released more details regarding what led up to an arrest caught on video in Williams Lake Sunday, Oct. 26. (Facebook video screenshot)
Review launched after ‘high-risk, multi-jurisdictional’ chase, arrest in Williams Lake

RCMP launching a full review and code of conduct investigation

Freighter drags anchor towards Boulder Point Oct. 22. It came within 730 metres of the shore, according to maps from the Port of Nanaimo. (Photo submitted)
MacGregor introduces bill to address freighter anchorages along the South Coast

Concerns about the environment, noise, pollution and safety abundant

(Pxfuel)
B.C. limits events in private homes to household, plus ‘safe six’ amid COVID-19 surge

Henry issued a public health order limiting private gatherings to one household, plus a group of ‘safe six’ only

B.C. Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson speaks during a drive-in car rally campaign stop at a tour bus operator, in Delta, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Andrew Wilkinson stepping down as B.C. Liberal leader

Will stay on until the next party leader is chosen

Harvesters participating in the extended commercial halibut season will need to land their catch in either Prince Rupert (pictured), Vancouver, or Port Hardy by Dec. 14. (File photo)
B.C.’s commercial halibut season extended three weeks

COVID-19 market disruptions at the root of DFO’s decision

Most Read