CAO and Hydro One announce 2024 Community Coaching Grant to make organized sport more accessible

  • June 04, 2024

TORONTO – June 4, 2024 – Today, Hydro One Inc. (Hydro One) and the Coaches Association of Ontario (CAO) announced their 2024 Community Coaching Grant has opened applications to help coaches and organizations cover the rising costs of organized sports for youth, including sourcing new equipment, safety training and much more. Eligible coaches and organizations can apply for the Community Coaching Grant and recipients will receive up to $1,000 to cover expenses to keep sports safe and accessible.

According to the CAO’s Ontario Coaching Report released in November 2023, 52 per cent of coaches reported out-of-pocket financial costs were a significant challenge, with 65 per cent of sport organizations having a hard time finding enough coaches to address their coaching needs.

“Sports and coaches play a critical role in shaping a brighter future for many young people,” said Lisa Pearson, Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Hydro One. “This summer Hydro One is proud to support the coaches and organizations that make sports more accessible, and we thank them for their tireless commitment to their athletes, teams and communities.”

“At the CAO, our dedication lies in supporting the diverse needs of coaches, equipping them with the essential resources to support all athletes and participants,” said Jeremy Cross, Executive Director, Coaches Association of Ontario. “Our ongoing partnership with Hydro One ensures coaches across all parts of the province have the necessary tools to serve their community effectively, prioritizing safety and growth.”

“The Community Coaching Grant played a pivotal role in our program, helping us to expand our coaching initiatives at the grassroots level, train new coaches, promote inclusivity and implement safety protocol,” said Christine Wozniak, FUN Whitby Ringette, a 2023 Community Coaching Grant recipient with Dennis Ong. “We were able to establish much-needed post-pandemic community engagement where the principles of ‘Every Child Matters’ and ‘Every Volunteer and Parent Matters’ resonated deeply. We express our heartfelt gratitude to the CAO and Hydro One for enabling us to ‘BE THE CHANGE’ and create a lasting impact.”

Nominations have also opened for the Hydro One Safe Play Award, presented to one exemplary coach committed to promoting safety within their team(s) and community as part of the 2024 Ontario Coaching Excellence Awards. Last year, Myma Okuda-Rayfuse from the Leander Boat Club & McMaster University was selected for her work as an outstanding role model dedicated to mental health and building a positive sport community for all. This year’s recipient will be awarded on September 14, 2024, at the Rogers Centre with a Toronto Blue Jays VIP experience and $500 prize as part of National Coaches Week.

Applications for the 2024 Community Coaching Grant can be submitted online at Grant submissions close June 25, 2024 and recipients will be notified in August 2024.

To nominate a coach for the Hydro One Safe Play Award, visit Nominations close June 10, 2024.

The Community Coaching Grant and Hydro One Safe Play Award are part of Safe Sport 101, a partnership between Hydro One and the CAO established in 2020, dedicated to giving coaches the tools they need to make sport safe, fun, and inclusive for all. Safe Sport 101 is a virtual hub that offers coaches free safety resources including an eight-part eLearning series, community grants, downloadable resources, and the latest coaching research with the Ontario Coaching Report.

Hydro One’s Community Investment program focuses on building safe communities in Ontario. The company supports programs, events and initiatives that focus on safety training and safe play.

For further information:

Media can contact Hydro One Media Relations 24 hours a day at 1-877-506-7584 (toll-free in Ontario only) or 416-345-6868.

Eric McLoughlin, Senior Lead, Events & Partner Development, Coaches Association of Ontario. Tel: 416-426-7005


Receive up to $1,000 to cover expenses & keep sport safe