KidSport Week, which recognizes the importance of sports in health and social development, is happening in Penticton from Sept. 7 to 13 . (file photo)

KidSport Week kicking off next Saturday in Penticton

Provincewide event from Sept. 7 to 13 promotes importance of sports for youth

The importance of sports in health and social development will be front and centre in Penticton during KidSport Week, a provincewide event from Sept. 7 to 13.

KidSport Week is part of a provincial government effort to promote involvement in sports and physical activity as part of a healthy lifestyle, according to a media release about the seven-day event.

READ MORE: Okanagan grocer and KidSport collaborate for charity

“KidSport Penticton recognizes the numerous benefits that sport provides for the development of children,” said Dave Lieskovsky, committee chair for KidSport Penticton in the release.

“Not only does it help to develop children physically, it teaches them the value of leadership, desire, planning, hard work, goal-setting, honesty, sacrifice, dedication, positive thinking and self-confidence.”

Beginning in B.C. in 1993, KidSport was launched in Penticton in 1999. This year marks the 20th anniversary. In 2018, KidSport Penticton gave out more than $53,000 to support kids.

The funding demand has been steadily increasing since the local chapter started, Lieskovsky added.

READ MORE: Vernon golf tournament raises money for KidSport

“It represents an increase of approximately $10,000 since 2017,” he said. “We are now at a point where we can’t financially keep up with this demand, so we’ll need to make some adjustments in the upcoming years.”

KidSport Penticton gives out grants to families in need with all the money raised in Penticton going directly to the kids, the release reads.

The grants are applied to either registration fees or equipment purchase for their chosen sport. Priority is given to those who are accessing the sport for the first time. In the past, children have used KidSport funding to access sports such as soccer, hockey, skating, judo, Taekwondo, karate, gymnastics, baseball and swimming.

KidSport Penticton is always accepting donations. If residents would like to contribute, visit the website.

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