Athletes, parents, and coaches have a brilliant opportunity for learning and development, thanks to programming offered through the South West District for Culture, Recreation and Sport Inc. (SWDCRS).
SWDCRS is one of seven total districts organized across Saskatchewan. The southwest region includes all the territory from the Alberta border to the U.S. border, and east to the RM of Pense boundary.
The organization assists sports teams, individual athletes, and cultural organizations in the province, and its mission is to develop community sport programs across the district.
“Within that region we look after sport, culture, and recreation organizations, basically helping them to match with the resources they are looking for,” said Brennen Ronovsky, the community development consultant with SWDCRS. “We do workshops, training opportunities, and host cultural and recreational gatherings.”
To provide its programming, SWDCRS has partnered with the Sport Medicine & Science Council.
The Sport Medicine & Science Council is a province-wide group of professionals that includes sport psychologists, physiotherapists, and nutritionists. These professionals consult with the SWDCRS and individual sports teams, with one example being previous Canada Games athletes.
“They offer funding to the districts themselves … to put on these sessions. We utilize that funding to (allow) each district to offer sessions each month,” Ronovsky said about the council.
SWDCRS then facilitates training and works with individual communities to set up its workshops.
The recent concussion workshop through the SWDCRS was led by Dr. Jordan Anderson on Sept. 13.
The workshop was one hour long and kept a practical focus. “A lot of it was preventative measures, and then how to return to play,” explained Ronovsky.
Coaches and players were trained on how to recognize the signs of a concussion, how to identify when an athlete needs to be pulled from play, and the procedure to take them off the field. The workshop then explained what must be done for a player to fully recover.
For SWDCRS members, this and all other virtual workshops are free of charge.
Membership is based on community involvement rather than individuals signing up to register. To become a member, you just have to live in a member community.
To get a community on board, all the community has to do is reach out and register. Qualification doesn’t require expensive facilities, just an established board or cultural venue such as a library or small museum. “Basically, anything that falls under the sport, recreation, or cultural category,” Ronovsky clarified.
The membership cost is $30 for the year, and memberships need to be renewed by Mar. 31.
Workshops provide networking opportunities, community input, and round-table discussions. Questions such as how to raise funds or get more volunteers to sign up are covered at these meetings, and the goal is to use member input to help improve the program.
Membership covers more than just in-person or virtual workshops. SWDCRS also hosts yearly gatherings.
The organization’s fall gathering is cultural, with a focus on museums, multicultural organizations, libraries, and is a one-day event held in Avonlea on Oct. 25. In the spring, the organization will host a recreational gathering with upcoming details available on its website.
“We usually do one cultural and one recreational gathering (each year),” Ronovsky said. “It’s a huge networking opportunity for some of these organizations to meet other people doing similar things.”
SWDCRS hosts additional classes that range from insurance coverage to grant writing to sponsorship development. For a complete list of upcoming programs, you can visit the organization’s website.
To register for upcoming workshops, sign up as a member, or for more information, the organization’s website is GoSouthWest.ca.
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