More than $10,000 has been raised to support community groups and Indian Residential School Survivors Society of BC (IRSSS) in a joint fundraising initiative between the Rupert Rampage and the Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA)
The announcement made on Feb. 11, by the CIHL hockey teams’ title sponsor stated, eight Northcoast charities will benefit from the volunteer efforts of team players and fans throughout the 2021-22 regular season.
Funding will support essential services and programs for Friendship House Association, North Coast Transition Society, Change Makers Education Society, North Coast Health Improvement Society, KidSport Prince Rupert, Ts’msyen Sm’algyax Language Authority and 333 Trinity House. Trinity House donated its portion to IRSSS.
“As the extent of the historic injustices of Canada’s residential schools was brought to the forefront in 2021, the Rupert Rampage and PRPA endeavoured to unite the North Coast hockey community behind survivors and intergenerational survivors,” PRPA stated. “For the 2021-22 season, the team introduced specially designed orange Every Child Matters jerseys and held a ceremony to pay tribute to the memories of the thousands of Indigenous children who were tragically taken from their families.”
More than $4,000 was raised when the Rampage also launched a season-long campaign to fundraise for organizations that serve and promote Indigenous cultures and youth. At each Rampage home game ‘donation stations’ were set up in partnership with PRPA and a different non-profit. Limited edition Every child Matters t-shirts were sold, as well as cotton candy.
A matching donation from PRPA brought the total raised to $8,028 with more than half being donated to the 20-year-old IRSSS who provide essential services to survivors and intergenerational survivors of the residential school system.
“The Rupert Rampage have demonstrated leadership and respect for their community in response to the confirmation of unmarked graves on the sites of former residential schools and we are proud to work together to support survivors and their families,” Shaun Stevenson, president and CEO, Prince Rupert Port Authority said. “We are sincerely grateful to Rampage fans for their tremendous generosity and enthusiasm for the Donation Station throughout the season and thank all of the groups who partnered with us to make it a success.”
In addition, the Prince Rupert Salvation Army also benefited from the Rampage raising $2,200 through the annual Goals for Giving Hope campaign. Rampage players scored 22 times on home ice over during the season and netting $100 for each goal. More than $26,000 has been raised jointly between the Rampage and PRPA since the team started the annual initiative. Funds are helping to support the Salvation Army vital services such as the city Food Bank and soup kitchen.
“The reaction from the community this season has been incredibly inspiring and the players extend their appreciation to the fans and PRPA for their ongoing support,” Terena Stegavig, Rupert Rampage vice president said.
“We are also thankful for the chance to channel our efforts to honour the legacy of late Rupert Rampage trainer, Jules Robinson, who passed away in February 2021. He was a dedicated part of our North Coast hockey community and being able to give back to causes that provide support to Indigenous people and promote youth sports helps us keep his memory alive.”
K-J Millar | Journalist
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