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News Room – Inside the Winnipeg Police Service

Play-It-Again Sports Makes Awesome Assist for Dufferin Hockey Program

Play It Again Sports Makes Awesome Assist for Dufferin Hockey Program

In the fall of 2012, School Resource Officer(SRO), Cst. Garnie McIntyre and the Principal of Dufferin School Mr. Wayne Wyke embarked on an initiative to introduce inner-city students to the game of hockey.

The program, simply called "The Dufferin Hockey Academy", is aimed primarily at Aboriginal youth between the ages of five and 12.

Dufferin Hockey AcademyIt’s led by Cst. McIntyre, who serves as the school’s SRO, with the assistance of a dedicated and energetic team of WPS Cadets – many of whom have had the opportunity to compete and coach at various levels of hockey.

The program takes place Wednesdays throughout the school year. About 40 kids take part, with the WPS members involved volunteering their time to continue the program.  Undoubtedly, anyone who has seen the program in action will tell you, it has played a significant role to putting a smile on these youngsters as they build self-esteem through sport.

One of the greatest challenges in operating the program has been a lack of equipment, required to keep the kids safe on the ice.  The program’s success depends on having the equipment available to families and children that would otherwise not have the means of obtaining their own.  Having proper equipment also provides the child with a feeling of confidence and belonging that is clearly evident from their willingness to participate.

Dufferin Hockey AcademyUnfortunately, not every family has the financial resources to cover the sometimes costly expense of hockey equipment.  This challenge is compounded when growing children wish to continue in the sport.

That is where Mr. Greg Vermette of Play-It-Again Sports stepped in.

Mr. Vermette owner of Play-It-Again Sports has a real understanding of making sporting equipment financially affordable. It’s the foundation to his business.  As a committed community partner, and inspired by Chief Clunis’ commitment to creating a culture of safety in Winnipeg and his assertion everyone has a role to play in strengthening our community, Mr. Vermette stepped up and has repurposed a massive amount of new and used hockey equipment which he has generously donated to the program.

Dufferin Hockey Academy

The distribution of the equipment is being managed by our partners at Dufferin School, and the shipment was dropped off by Play-It-Again today (January 13th). The equipment will be loaned out each season, with the expectation that it will be returned at year end so that as each student outgrows his or her equipment it can be shared with another deserving student the following year.

The Winnipeg Police Service is humbled to be a small part of this initiative between Dufferin School and Play-It-Again Sports.