For Beckie Groves, getting involved in KidSport was all about new beginnings.
“I was first introduced to KidSport by my good friend Nicole. At that point, KidSport was pretty new in La Ronge and I was also fairly new to La Ronge and was looking for a way to be involved in my new community,” Groves said.
Groves started with KidSport as a member-at-large and she noted that it slowly became her passion. After a short time and some nudging from another good friend and member, Tonia, she took over as Chair and held that position for 10 years. She has recently stepped down from that position but still remains on the committee.
One of the big projects she has undertaken over the years is founding the annual La Ronge & Area KidSport 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament, which recently wrapped up the 11th edition. The event averages 7-12 teams each year from La Ronge and also includes teams from Sandy Bay, La Loche and other areas. This tournament is the chapter’s primary fundraiser, raising an average of $15,000.
“When we first started the 3-on-3 basketball tournament we did it for a few reasons. We wanted a fundraiser that was something different. At one of our brainstorming sessions, I selfishly said I wanted to do something where I could play adult basketball - it was something that I really missed after moving away from the city,” Groves said.
“We planned our first adult, co-ed, semi-competitive basketball tournament. It was pretty small - just a handful of teams that came together. Now it includes a barbecue, a steak night, a silent auction and a day of basketball for some competitive adults in town. The best part of this year, was having the chance to be on the same team as my two oldest children.”
Groves feels that events like the 3-on-3 basketball tournament are important because they show kids that being involved in sport can have lifelong benefits. Watching adults participating in the sports they played as children is a demonstration of the importance of getting kids involved in sport. She hopes to help children develop a lifelong passion for physical activity so they can enjoy the many benefits of sport such as commitment, discipline, respect, camaraderie, and the value of hard work.
Groves said her time with KidSport has impacted who she is as a person.