CALGARY, Alberta – May 12, 2016 – As Taekwondo Canada, Judo Canada and Wrestling Canada Lutte prepare for a four-day event at the Olympic Oval at the University of Calgary, the three National Sport Federations cannot help but to think of the evacuees as a result of the wildfires in Alberta. Given the need for aid for evacuees and the future rebuild in the Province, the federations, through the organizer of the event, have announced a joint effort to initiate a drive to support Fort McMurray and its evacuees that will start this weekend and last over the next few months.
First, all three federations will work in solidarity to collect funds at the event that they are all participating in this weekend from May 12-15. Several collection areas will be set up where attendees may donate to the Red Cross. In addition, the three federations will publish and promote the portal the Red Cross is preparing for this drive within the next day or so through their social platforms, where people from across Canada may donate directly.
In addition to the group effort, each federation is undertaking their own efforts to assist in funding and rebuilding the region. With respect to Taekwondo Canada, they along with the governing body in Alberta have pledged to donate a combined $5,000 to help rebuild taekwondo schools affected by the wildfires, with each contributing $2,500 each towards the effort. Darlene MacDonald, the Executive Director for Taekwondo Canada, stated “It is our sincere hope that our donation will inspire other donations from the Taekwondo community across Canada. While our sport focuses on individual achievement, our values as a sport focus on the community.”
Judo Canada, in addition to assisting with the collection of donations through the Red Cross initiative will also be donating $2,000. The organization will also donate $2,500 to the Calgary food bank. Adrien Landry, CEO of Judo Canada, affirmed, “We need to show our support for Alberta, who is hosting us, and also show solidarity to those in need.”
Wrestling Canada Lutte is also supporting the Red Cross drive and will likewise donate all gate proceeds of this weekend event to the evacuees. Christine Nordhagen, the event chair of the international wrestling event, stated, “Not only do we want people to attend this event to support our athletes, but we also want people to show up to support the community that has been impacted by these wildfires.”
This unique event with three Olympic sports holding a joint competition in an Olympic venue has been in the works for a long time. Rébecca Khoury, who is coordinating among the three Federations to put on this event added, “It is impossible to attend this event in Alberta and ignore what is happening outside the walls of the Oval. Each of the three federations – Taekwondo Canada, Judo Canada and Wrestling Canada Lutte – are committed to helping those in need a this time. It needs to be a national effort.”
The three-sport event is being held at the Olympic Oval in Calgary, Alberta at 2500 University Drive NW, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada from May 12-15. If you are interested in attending the event to support the athletes and, by extension, those impacted by the wildfires, please feel free to do so. Not only will you help a great cause, you will get to see some of the top athletes in Canada compete in their sport.