Unfair Play: Barriers to Accessing Sports Programs and Facilities in Lethbridge

Despite our city¹s apparent affluence, many youth in Lethbridge do not have access to sport and recreation opportunities. Limited incomes, transportation issues and other numerous and complex challenges prevent participation in even the most basic recreational programs and services that most families take for granted. Those children denied access may be the ones who would benefit most from recreating and playing sports with their peers. Leveling the playing field would benefit the entire community.

Tom Hopkins, Manager of Recreation Parks and Culture for the City of Lethbridge will define the challenges faced by children in our community who wish to play but can¹t. Information garnered from various planning processes and community surveys provides the background in understanding the issues. Why are we failing to provide the broad needs of our community in sport and recreation? What opportunities may there be for assistance and support?

Speaker: Tom Hopkins

Tom Hopkins started work with the City of Lethbridge as a Lifeguard. He held management positions with Transit and Leisure Facilities prior to becoming Manager of Recreation Parks and Culture. He is currently overseeing development of a Recreation and Culture Master Plan, a Parks and Bicycle and Pathways Master Plan and a Sport and Recreation Policy.

Tom also has worked with several not-for-profit organizations locally and provincially. He is past president of the Recreation Facility Personnel Association of Alberta.

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