~ Sheri Blaylock Chair
~ William Utech Vice Chair
~ Jen McDonald Secretary
~ Nick Hourie Treasurer
~ Barett McDonnell
ROC began as a program funded through the Provincial Government designed to work one-on-one with families that were working toward securing employment and no longer requiring Employment and Income Assistance. While working with these families we discovered a huge gap in programming within our most vulnerable neighbourhoods. We chose to address this void for the betterment of the families we work one-on-one with and all children and youth from low-income, high-risk families. We have worked diligently to secure funding that allows us to create programs and opportunities that are provided free of charge to families that have not previously been involved or do not have the means or opportunity to get involved in sports, recreation, or leisure activities.
Through our evolution we have built strong partnerships with organizations, schools, and within the community at large which has allowed us to offer many programs and activities for the under-serviced areas of Portage la Prairie. Recreation Opportunities for Children (ROC) has been administered through a host organization since its inception in 2011. The program was overseen by a committee and run by the Recreation Supervisor. The program has seen tremendous growth during our first four years and thus it was unanimously decided it was time to become our own entity.
In December 2015 we became incorporated as ROK Central Inc.
(Recreation Opportunities for Kids). Incorporating and becoming our own non-profit organization offers benefits such as autonomy, individual mandate, additional funding sources, overall flexibility, and especially the ability to provide charitable receipts for donations. This move will also provide opportunity for growth of the program.
We continue to work one-on-one with a maximum of 40 children, in addition to now providing sustainable programs and activities for all families. We firmly believe all children should enjoy the same access to recreation and leisure opportunities regardless of their family's financial situation. We work collaboratively with other organizations, local businesses, and community members, which has enabled us to be proactive in creating recreational programs where gaps have been identified. These programs allow children and families to experience a variety of sports, recreation, and leisure opportunities that they would otherwise not be able to experience. They also help to eliminate the isolation some families experience.
Through the numerous programs we offer we have seen attendances of over 425 different children and many community volunteers. We strive to continue to grow and develop so that eventually all children in the Portage area have equal access to sport, recreation, and leisure—no matter their socio-economic status.
To connect children and youth to recreation and leisure activities.
ROK Executive Director
~ Lynne Parker
~ Carrie-Anne Lander
What's happening with ROK:
Hockey Skills Classes are on! (see event calendar for dates/times/locations)
Winterfest 2017 (see event calendar and poster below for details)
* Family Relationships
* Being inclusive in a respectful environment
All children and youth have the opportunity to participate in activities that contribute to their overall health and well-being.
RECREATION OPPORTUNITIES for KIDS
It’s amazing what we can do when we come together.