AthletesCAN celebrates Sports Day in Canada with its 7th Annual KidsCAN School Day event in Toronto at Bill Crothers Secondary School

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AthletesCAN kicked off its 2012 Forum with the 7th annual KidsCAN School Day on Friday, September 28th at Bill Crothers Secondary School. Over 50 athletes met with more than 700 students from the Toronto region for a day of sporting activities and fun!

KidsCAN School Day is an opportunity for school children in the Forum’s host community to meet with national team athletes, try a variety of sports and learn about the importance of physical activity and healthy lifestyles. Since its inception in 2006, AthletesCAN’s KidsCAN School Day events have enabled over 200 national team athletes including Olympians and Paralympians, to reach over 19,700 youth from Whitehorse, Yukon to Fredericton, New Brunswick with messages of inspiration and determination.

KidsCAN School Day at Bill Crothers Secondary School was a resounding success! AthletesCAN Ambassadors introduced the students to various sports, shared their motivational stories on how sport has benefited them and inspired the youth to embrace and get excited about sport and the importance of being physically active.

“A lot of times it’s not the athlete that finds their sport, but rather the sport that finds them. Noted Jeane Lassen, Olympic Weightlifter, “KidsCAN School Day is an opportunity to expose kids to all sorts of sports they may never have known existed. Even if kids don’t find something they’re passionate about on this day, they can leave with the confidence to try other new things when the occasion arises.”

The 2012 KidsCAN School Day also had a special visit from the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Labour. “Healthy bodies lead to healthier, happier communities,” said the Minister of Labour, Lisa Raitt. “I am pleased to be taking part in this year’s KidsCAN School Day, which will have a positive influence on our youth here in the Toronto area. It is important to remember that some of the young athletes participating here today will be our future podium heroes of tomorrow.”

“As we saw during the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games, our Canadian athletes are an enormous source of pride for all Canadians and incredible role models for our young people,” said the Honourable Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport) who sent along his best wishes for the event. “Today’s KidsCAN School Day provides an excellent opportunity for our youth to try a number of different sports, while getting tips from some of our top athletes. I encourage all of our young participants to take advantage of today’s exciting event.”

“KidsCAN School Day is so cool, because such a wide range of students get to experience and try exciting sports. I hope the students will be inspired by our Canadian Olympic and Paralympic athletes – I know we athletes will be inspired by the enthusiasm of the kids!” said Josh Vander Vies, 2012 Paralympic Bronze Medalist in the sport of Boccia.

AthletesCAN would like to thank the staff and students at Bill Crothers Secondary School, True Sport, ParticipACTION and CBC for their generous support of the 2012 KidsCAN School Day as an official event of Sports Day in Canada.

Thank you too to all the athletes who participated in the 2012 KidsCAN School Day:

Courtney Brown, Synchronized Swimming Senior National Team Athlete
Craig Buntin, Figure Skating 2006 Olympian, 3-time Canadian Champion
Ahren Cadieux, Beach Volleyball 2-time Canadian Champion
Katrina Cameron, Rhythmic Gymnastics 2012 Olympian, 2011 Pan Am Medalist
Joel Dembe, Wheelchair Tennis 2012 Paralympian
Alec Denys, Para Archery 5-time Paralympian
Marilou Dozois-Prévost, Weightlifting 2008 Olympian
Sam Edney, Luge 2006 and 2010 Olympian
Ryan Ferguson, Lifesaving 2006 Commonwealth Games
Carolyn Ganes, Rowing Senior National Team Member
Igor Gantsevich, Fencing Senior National Team Member
Christine Gauthier, Para Canoe 2-time World Champion
Tom Hall, Canoe 2008 Olympic Bronze Medalist, 2003 Pan Am Games Champion
Al Hanet, Blind Bowls Senior National Team Member
Trevor Hirschfield, Wheelchair Rugby 2012 Paralympic Silver Medalist, 2008 Paralympic Bronze Medalist
Maria Jaworski, Rugby Senior National Team Member
Greg Kilroy, Cross Country Ski Senior Athlete
Jeane Lassen, Weightlifting 2008 Olympian, World Championship Bronze, Pan American Champion
Vanessa Lee, Archery 2010 Pan American Championships
Hugh MacDonald, Archery 2007 Pan Am Games Medalist
Louis-Pierre Mainville, Volleyball 2011 Pan Am Games
Melanie McCann, Modern Pentathlon 2012 Olympian
Fiona McKee, Badminton Former Senior National Team Member
Meghan Montgomery, Adaptive Rowing 2-time Paralympian
Tyler Mosher, Para Snowboard 2010 Paralympian
Jeff Pain, Skeleton 3-time Olympian, 2006 Olympic Silver Medalist, 2-time World Champion
Monali Patel, Cricket Senior National Team Member
Dasha Peregoudova, Taekwondo Senior Athlete
Erik Petursson, Diving 5-time National Championship Medalist
Robin Randall, Water Polo 2002, 2006 Commonwealth Games Medalist
Anjelika Reznik, Rhythmic Gymnastics 2012 Olympian, 2011 Pan Am Games Medalist
Ryan Riehl, Adaptive Waterski Senior National Team Athlete
Josh Riker-Fox, Modern Pentathlon 2008 Olympian
Scott Sandison, Field Hockey 2008 Olympian
Rhea Schmidt, Swimming Senior National Team Athlete
Mike Smith, Wrestling World Championships and Pan American Games
Mathea Stevens, Modern Pentathlon Senior National Team Member
Ken Pereira, Field Hockey 2-time Olympic, 2-time Pan Am Games Champion, 3-time Pan Am Games Medalist
Erika Schmutz, Wheelchair Rugby 2008 Paralympic Bronze Medalist
Michael Tayler, Canoe/Kayak 2012 Olympian
Kathleen Tayler, Canoe/Kayak Senior National Team Member
Jeff Teutsch, Orienteering Senior National Team Member
Josh Vander Vies, Boccia 2012 Paralympic Bronze Medalist, 2-time Paralympian, 2011 Parapan Medalist

As the collective voice of Canadian national team athletes, AthletesCAN ensures an athlete centered sport system by developing athlete leaders who influence sport policy and, as role models, inspire a strong sport culture.

For more information contact:
Tracy Taylor, AthletesCAN Interim Executive Director