By Dale Woodard on July 24, 2021.
Out a disappointing development comes a helping hand for local non-profit groups.
With the cancellation of the 2020 Alberta Summer Games due to the COVID-19 pandemic – and again in 2021 when it was postponed – the Lethbridge 2020 Alberta Summer Games Society has announced the 2020 Games Legacy Fund designed to support not-for-profit sport and cultural organizations with activities in and around the city of Lethbridge.
With $250,000, raised by volunteers’ fundraising, casinos and sponsors, left over as a result of the cancellations and several local supporters transferring their financial sponsorship in support of the Legacy Fund, the Games Society is now accepting applications from local sport and cultural organizations to use the funds.
“Bittersweet is definitely the term of the day,” said games manager Steve Dudas of losing the Alberta Summer Games which would have begun Friday and featured roughly 3,000 participants competing in 14 sports and requiring over 2,000 volunteers over four days. “It has taken a couple of months to figure it all out. But $250,000 available for the community, we’re pretty happy with that. The four casinos that we worked and some other fundraising projects we had, we were pretty happy with the amount of money that would have been spent on the Games and hopefully some extra money left over. But now the partnerships, sponsors and donations we had have added up. Now we’re just hoping people apply.
“In partnership with the Lethbridge Sport Council, they’ve been really good helping us out in getting this all worked out.”
The purpose of the 2020 Games Legacy Fund is to provide financial support to assist in the development of sport and culture pursuits in Lethbridge, capital projects/facility upgrades, assist in the development of athletes and artists, provide coach and officiating mentoring and training, organizational development, equipment and supplies and promoting a sport to potential new members
“We have a committee who will look at all the applications,” said Dudas. “If we get a whole bunch of them, we’ll see what happens. We may only get a few, meaning they may actually the dollars they’re looking for.”
The Legacy Fund launched Thursday and has already garnered interest.
“Just chatting with a couple people at the City, they’ve gotten some phone calls and I’ve gotten some emails already and that was just going out (Thursday) morning,” said Dudas. “So we’re pretty happy with that, there are already some questions about it.”
The application submission deadline is Sept. 30 at 4 p.m. Funding recipients will be notified no later than Oct. 15.
Not-for-profit sport and community organizations with activities in and around Lethbridge are encouraged to review the application form and criteria available online at https://lethbridgesportcouncil.ca/news, 2020 Games Legacy Fund.
Questions can also be emailed to Dudas at firstname.lastname@example.org
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