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Lack of coaches jeopardizes Unity CanSkate Program

Unity Skating Club's callout for a CanSkate coach has an interested party being interviewed, and hopes are high the program will continue for the upcoming season.

UNITY — Unity Skating Club had advertised widely on social media that CanSkate registration would not be held until a coach could be found, putting the popular children’s activity program in jeopardy.

Unity Skating Club recognized longtime CanSkate Coach, Colleen Smith, at their March 2023 ice carnival, upon her retirement after 25 years. Smith would stay on in her coaching role with senior skaters.

 “We reached out to all of the skating clubs in our region and numerous ones beyond to see if there was anyone interested in joining us for our CanSkate program.” Unity Skating Club president Cindy Horner said,

The USC also reached out to club alumni to see if they would be interested in taking the required courses and once again becoming part of their skating club as the CanSkate coach.

Since the call-out occurred, the club has had an interested party contact them within the last week and the club’s executive will be holding an interview to see if this party would make a good fit for the club.

Horner says normally the club has about 42 children in the CanSkate program.

USC still runs their StarSkate Program, even if the CanSkate program has to be put on hold for one year and Horner says the club has a couple of ideas if this is the case.

“These ideas that our club came up with will still allow eager skaters, ages three and up, both new and seasoned, to be on the ice to develop their skating skills. With that being said, it is still a big job, and finding sufficient people to fill these roles is not an easy task to accomplish,” adds Horner.

Eligibility to become a CanSkate Coach include:

  • Being a current Skate Canada registrant with a Skate Canada club
  • Being at least 15 years of age
  • Having passed at least one Star 5 assessment
  • Having completed the required courses from Skate Canada

Horner confirms that the USC does pay a wage for the position of CanSkate Coach.

The club will advise its membership and interested skaters for this program of their progress in securing a coach, as well as when and if this program is able to run for this season.

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