The Williams Lake Blue Fins Swim Club is floating around the idea of adding a corporate sponsor.
“Year after year parents are struggling to fundraise and, in the end, fees keep going up and we feel there should be a better way to get the community involved to give access to those people who maybe can’t afford to join the club,” said Rhonda McCreight, a member of the executive with the WLBF.
The WLBF are hoping to partner with a corporation or business who wants to be involved in active sponsorship of the club’s recreational and competitive swimmers.
“Ensuring there are inclusive community sports is essential to building a united, active and progressive community,” she said, noting the club has been struggling the past few years to roll funds over annually.
Benefits to the club, she noted, would include more inclusive access for community members through reasonable swim fees; reduced emphasis on non-sustainable fundraising projects that tax parents and businesses; sponsorship application program for swimmers experiencing financial hardships; and rebuilding and reallocation of funds that support swimmers in provincial and national swim meets.
The club began a successful rebuild going from 39 swimmers in 2012 to its current 70-plus members and has two swimmers with Western National time standards, five swimmers with ‘AAA” provincial times and seven swimmers with ‘AA’ provincial time standards.
A new head coach, Chad Webb, who hopped on board with the program for the 2012/13 season, is a nationally-recognized level three swim coach and a certified school teacher.
His coaching history includes coaching Canada at the 2006 Para Pan-Am Games in Rio, the 2008 Paralympic team at the Beijing Olympics and the 2010-2012 University of British Columbia varsity club. He was also named the Canada West University Coach of the Year in 2011.
“Chad is helping our swimmers learn how to set and achieve goals they never thought were possible,” McCreight said.
Currently, fundraising projects managed by parent volunteers are essential in covering almost 22 per cent of the club’s expenses for the year, McCreight said.
“Sponsorship committed to alleviating this cost would allow the club to put their time, effort and good will into creating a sustainable swim fee grid, initiating a bursary for swimmers experiencing financial burden and building a healthy national swim fund to promote and support our competitive national and provincial swimmers.”
She noted should a corporate sponsor decide to jump on board they would be responsible for changing the name of the club with their business included in the name. The club would also alter all of its shirts, uniforms, swim caps, bags, coats and more to include said company name.
“A lot of advertising goes with a club’s name,” she said. “Not only locally, but regionally and provincially [with us], too. [We hope] the sponsor will also be a partner and participant in offering a swim bursary to families and swimmers in need.
“We’d be delighted to meet with any representatives to discuss,” she said. “If people are willing to chat with us about what they could do that would be great.”
For more information or to discuss possible sponsorship contact McCreight at firstname.lastname@example.org.