Snowshoes and skates lead to family fun thanks to MNO initiatives

skate exchangeBruce Power donated funds towards the Snowshoe Lending Library.
From left: Pauline Richardson, PCMNO Region 7 Councillor; Larry
Duval, Senator of MNO Moon River Métis Council; Mike Briggs,
Manager First Nations and Métis Relations at Bruce Power; Peter
Couture, President of the MNO Great Lakes Métis Council; Jodi Blue,
Healthy Weights Connection Site Coordinator; David Dusome,
President of the MNO Georgian Bay Métis Council.

Parents and kids in Region 7 had great opportunities to stay active this winter despite the snowy weather thanks to the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Snowshoe Lending Library and the Skate Exchange Program in Midland.

MNO staff from Midland first began working towards the healthy winter activities by approaching Mike Briggs, Manager First Nations and Métis Relations at Bruce Power, to discuss expanding the MNO Georgian Bay Métis Council’s Snowshoe Lending Library.

During a meeting for Region 7 MNO councils in January, Briggs presented a $2,000 cheque to the MNO Georgian Bay Métis Council to go towards the Snowshoe Lending Library, a resource that is available to everyone within Region 7.

Bruce Power’s generous donation contributed towards buying child-sized snowshoes to go with previously obtained adult-sized snowshoes so parents and their children can both borrow snowshoes for fun winter activities by going to the MNO’s Midland office.
Snowshoeing isn’t the only available activity. In January, MNO staff teamed up with Healthy Weight Connection and Olympia Sports, a local sporting goods store, to offer a Skate Exchange Program. A call for donations was sent out to the community, inviting residents to donate their old skates by dropping them off at the MNO office in Midland.  Over 50 pairs of skates were donated, varying from child-to-adult-sizes.

The Skate Exchange initiative intends to make skating more accessible and affordable by collecting skates, providing skate-sharpening discounts from Olympia Sports and offering free skate vouchers to use at the North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre. For some families, transportation was found to be a great barrier towards accessing a skating rink. The MNO organized to ensure that gas vouchers for these families are also available to assist with getting to and from the skating rink.

Adult-size skates are especially in demand and parents are encouraged to return or exchange the skates once their kids have outgrown a previously acquired pair to offer more options for other skate enthusiasts.

All MNO citizens in Region 7 are encouraged to take part in the Snowshoe Lending Library and Skate Exchange Program.

The MNO partnered with the Healthy Kids Community Challenge North Simcoe Aboriginal Stream for the Snowshoe Lending Library. Skates donations can be dropped off at the MNO Georgian Bay Métis Council office located at 355 Cranston Crescent in Midland.

Published on: February 25, 2016

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