An innovative collaborative from Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut was one of three finalists sharing the $1.5 million Arctic Inspiration Prize awarded last evening. Their unique tri-territorial training initiative was designed to enhance individual, community and environmental well-being through the power and potential of recreation.
Nominated by Olympic cyclist Zach Bell, and led by the Recreation Parks and Association of Yukon (RPAY), the collaborative of non-profits, governments and a social enterprise received $600,000 in funding to develop and deliver meaningful learning and sustainable training for staff and volunteer leaders who serve as recreation coordinators and directors, youth leaders, board members, coaches, fitness leaders, camp counsellors, and after school leaders in the North.
The training and support provided will result in strengthening the competencies of these recreation staff and volunteers to help them better support children, youth and adults in finding their own opportunities for physical, social and artistic expression, to improve their health, socialize and interact with others, learn new skills, have fun and find life balance. And, they will be better able to engage citizens in organizing and delivering sport and recreation events, festivals, and the visual and performing arts that provide opportunities for self-expression, social interaction and civic pride.
In accepting the Arctic Inspiration Prize, Anne Morgan, Executive Director of RPAY said, “This project is about so much more than training recreation leaders. By building community leadership, we are investing in our future. We envision a future where recreation contributes to quality of life across the three territories.”