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Yukon government announces $1.7 million in funding for sports and recreation

Amounts aim to help athletes, officials and organizations
A group of young skiers race towards the finish line during a Cross Country Yukon event in Whitehorse. Cross Country Yukon is one of several organizations set to receive annual sports and recreation funding announced July 17. (Yukon News file)

The Yukon government has announced more than $1.7 million in grants to sports organizations, recreation groups, athletes and sports officials in the territory through the 2023/2024 annual sport and recreation funding.

The funding, which has four streams, is available through a partnership between Lotteries Yukon and Sports Canada.

“These funding streams assist Yukon sport and recreation organizations with running and organizing activities related to athlete and participant development, coach and leadership growth, special projects and facility operations and maintenance,” notes a July 17 release. “They also support individual athletes and officials who have demonstrated they are at an elite or high performance level.”

The funding streams include a Foundations grant program totalling more than $1 million, the Podium Pathway program of $462,000, Yukon High Performance Athlete/Officials Assistance program of $129,000 and the Elite Athlete Assistance program of $66,000.

The Foundations grant funding helps Yukon sport governing bodies and special recreation groups develop and deliver sport and recreation opportunities.

The Podium Pathway grant supports enhanced sport participation initiatives while the Yukon High Performance Athlete/Officials Assistance program provides funding for athletes who have demonstrated performance beyond the territorial level with potential improvement at the provincial, national or international levels. It also rewards officials who play key roles in individual sports.

The Elite Athlete Assistance program funds athletes carded by Sport Canada to prepare and participate in international sports events.

Funding is available annually and aimed at strengthening sport and recreation across the territory.

The funding amounts vary for recipients.

Cross Country Yukon received $108,000, the highest amount in the Foundations grant stream for a sports organization followed by the Yukon Amateur Hockey Association and Yukon Soccer Association, which received $88,500 and $88,000 respectively. Synchro Yukon Association received the smallest of the Foundations grants at $2,267.

For recreation groups, Skookum Jim Friendship Centre received the highest amount at $65,000, followed by Friends of Mount Sima, which received $53,200 and the Elder Active Recreation Association which received $45,000. Scout Council (Yukon) received the smallest of the recreation group amounts in the Foundations stream at $7,700.

For the Podium Pathway grant, Cross Country Yukon once again received the highest amount at $62,000 in funding. This was again followed by the Yukon Amateur Hockey Association at $45,000 and the Yukon Soccer Association at $42,000. At the other end of the scale was the Yukon Canoe and Kayak Club at $2,000.

In the Elite Athlete Assistance program stream, five athletes received $11,500 with another receiving $8,500.

For the High Performance grants, cross country skier Sonjaa Schmidt received the highest amount of $7,000 while another nine athletes in different sports – including judo, basketball, paddling, gymnastics, freestyle skiing and snowboarding – received $1,000 each. For officials, Luke Mahilum of basketball and Ryder Twardochleb of hockey received the highest amount of $2,000 each while Sophia Marnik of biathlon, Jessica Woodhouse of gymnastics and Doug Petriw of swimming all received $1,000 each.

“Yukon sport and recreation organizations provide important opportunities to stay healthy and active while strengthening community and building life skills,” Community Services Minister Richard Mostyn said. “The dedication, hard work and unwavering commitment of Yukon’s teams and athletes, ranging from grassroots to elite levels, serve as a constant source of inspiration.”

Sandy Silver, the minister responsible for the Yukon Lotteries Commission, said the government remains committed to investing in sport and recreation opportunities throughout the Yukon.

“We will continue to work with partners such as Yukon Lotteries, which is overseen by the Yukon Lotteries Commission, to help increase access and participation for all Yukoners in sport and recreation activities,” he said. “By empowering individuals to develop their skills and abilities in these areas, we are building a strong, resilient and community-driven Yukon together.”

Contact Patrick Egwu at

Patrick Egwu

About the Author: Patrick Egwu

I’m one of the newest additions at Yukon News where I have been writing about a range of issues — politics, sports, health, environment and other developments in the territory.
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