Nordiq Alberta Provincial Outreach

The Cause

As the provincial sport organization, we are leaders of cross-country skiing throughout Alberta. Our mission is to advocate for life-long participation in Nordic skiing for all Albertans, especially under-represented groups such as Indigenous populations, girls and women, and persons with a disability.

Our idea involved two components:
1) Provincial Open Camps
2) Outreach sessions throughout the province

The provincial open camps will be held twice a year (one on-snow and one dryland / roller skiing) for any club, athlete, skier, or participant in Alberta to attend. There is no required skill level, it's simply open to all to attend and participate. All are invited to join the camp to allow for connection and learnings outside of their immediate clubs or social circle. This camp would allow beginners to learn and be inspired by competitive skiers, such as the Alberta Ski Team, as well as providing athletes and coaches the opportunity to learn from each other in training or drill techniques and best practices.

At Nordiq Alberta, we aim to make events, training, and activities as accessible as we can so everyone is able to be involved and participate. We know that financial barriers for many exist, inhibiting their ability to participate in sport. This is why we'd subsidize at least a portion of the registration fees to attend the provincial open camp.

The outreach sessions will focus on being in person on the ground within communities. We would utilize the Government of Alberta's Zone Map and provide outreach within each of the 8 zones. This will allow us to strategically reach the entirety of the province throughout the outreach sessions. The outreach sessions would be customized to each zone based on their needs. The primary focus will be targeting youth as well as underrepresented groups, as listed above. The secondary focus of the sessions would be customized to the zone. For example, if a zone has a well established recreational ski community that is looking to become more competitive, the outreach session(s) would focus on that. Alternatively, if there isn't an established ski community within that zone the outreach session(s) would be more introductory such as "try-it" events with ski equipment and/or para-nordic equipment. Each outreach session would additionally have a coaching component to it to allow for coach and leadership development within each zone. This would also be customized for each zone to meet their specific needs.

Who Will it Benefit?

This idea has a large scope and therefore a large reach of who would benefit. For the open camps, all participants would benefit. The open camps are meant for everyone of any age and any skill level so that means parents, children, youth, masters - everyone - can participate in the camp. Participation can also be from anywhere in the province. We do our best to pick central locations making it accessible for all to attend. During the camps we also strive to have a group of para-nordic participants as well so persons with a disability, again regardless of age and ability level, would be welcome to participate and benefit from this idea.

Within both the provincial open camps and the outreach sessions we'd have opportunities for coach and leadership development. This could be learning drills, techniques, and best practices from other coaches at the camp or having a dedicated coaching session / development opportunity incorporated into the outreach session for that zone.

The outreach sessions for each zone are also open to all to participate. As noted above, the primary focus will be targeting youth and underrepresented groups while the secondary focus of the sessions would be customized to each zone. This means community members and local individuals - even those who are new or unfamiliar with cross country skiing - would be able to attend and participate.