Originally known as the Athlete’s Trust Fund, the Skaters’ Trust Fund emerged under the current name in November 1988. Over the past 26 years, Skate Canada – Central Ontario has provided over $1,036,000 in direct athlete funding ($344,500 in the past five years alone), primarily in the form of bursaries and athlete-related awards. In 2015 – 2016, we achieved an impressive total of $63,650in direct financial support to seventy-twoathletes and fourteen synchronized Skating teams.
Thanks to direct contributions to this Fund and the wonderful support from the skating community in Skate Canada – Central Ontario, Skaters from all member clubs have an opportunity to achieve their very best.
Our pride continues this year with the Standing Ovation Award in cognition of Margaret Garrison. Margaret was a long time section Vice President and ultimate volunteer who lost her courageous battle with cancer in 2009. In Margaret’s memory, a skater who shares Margaret’s spirit and passion for figure skating will receive an award of $ 1,000. This award continues thanks to a very generous and anonymous contributor.
In 2009, COS introduced the Team Elite Program, designed to recognize and financially reward the combined success of designed section competitions at Summer Skate, Octoberfest and our Sectional Championships. In 2015-2016, 35 Central Ontario competitors benefited from a total of $11,500in direct funding.
Commencing in 2007, Skate Canada – Central Ontario participated in the Ontario Skaters’ Promotional Contest with 100 per cent of net proceeds being directed to the Skaters’ Trust Fund. This fundraiser has been a wonderful success, with net proceeds in excess of $265,000to date, including approximately $36,825which was raised for the Skaters’ Trust Fund this year.
In 2006, the Executive Committee of the Skaters’ Trust examined how the funds were to be disbursed. Adhering to our motto that “excellence will be rewarded”, the Skate Canada – Central Ontario Board of Directors approved a refinement of the disbursement policy by ensuring that the mandate “provides only for direct athlete funding” while any additional financial support, should it be the payment of entry fees, cost of travel or the purchase of team outfits, be allocated from the organization’s general fund. Moreover, the Board of Directors again approved bursaries for gold, silver, and bronze medalists at various Olympic, International Skating Union, Skate Canada and Skate Ontario events such as, but not limited to, the Canadian Figure Skating Championships, Junior Nationals and the Canadian Synchronized Championships. Consequently, skaters who reach the podium will be financially rewarded for their success. For our skaters who accept ISU Assignments, Skate Canada – Central Ontario is pleased to provide varying degrees of financial support for their participation and placement.
In 2000, Skate Canada – Central Ontario reaffirmed its commitment to this Fund by donating 50 percent of the net revenue generated from our annual FUN Competition, with TEAM COS Skaters and parents being asked to donate their time and energy at this event. Since that decision, the FUN Competition has raised more than$259,000for the Fund. Effective February 2014, the Board of Directors doubled their support by increasing the donation of FUN net proceeds from 50 per cent to 100 per cent ($11,400in the current year). In recent years, the Fund has also been supplemented big generous donations from individual contributors and proceeds from hosting grants for national events, ice shows and support from the organization’s general fund.
Skate Canada – Central Ontario continues to annually present the Elvis Stojko Awards and the Ruth Phillips Memorial Awards, the latter named after a former President of the Section. We are proud to honour these two individuals who contributed so much to our Section and Athletes.
We wish also to thank the Scarboro Skating club for their generous contributions to this fund this year through the Ursula LehmingScarboro Skate Awards. This club has generously supported athlete development and the Skaters’ Trust Fund for many years through events that they hold annually.
In an age where government funding for amateur sport is constantly redefined and, in many instances frozen, it is important for all skating stakeholders to plan an active role in ensuring the strong continuity of our sport. The future of our sport and our athletes continue to be significantly enhanced through the Skaters’ Trust Fund.