Girl power the focus at Kelowna charity hockey tournament

Girl power the focus at Kelowna charity hockey tournament

The Grindstone Award Foundation women’s tournament will be held at the Capital News Centre

By Matthew Abrey

An Okanagan charity hockey tournament is raising money to help girls get on the ice without having to deal with financial barriers to play the sport they love.

The Grindstone Award Foundation women’s charity tournament, which will be held at the Capital News Centre, July 20 to 22, currently has approximately 140 women registered. All proceeds will go towards the charity.

The Grindstone Award Foundation is a registered charity that enables young female players to participate and improve their hockey skill development. The intent is to provide financial support to communities across Canada and address the needs of female players who have a desire to play, but are unable to for financial reasons.

Grindstone was founded by Danielle Grundy, a former professional hockey player, who, in her playing days, earned a hockey scholarship in 2001 to play NCAA Division 1 hockey at Dartmouth College and subsequently played professionally in Switzerland for two years.

“Our charity believes that getting girls into sport, whether it is hockey or something else, helps build confidence and skills that enable them to be leaders off the ice as well,” says Grundy. “We have seen this first hand from the 10 girls who received bursaries from the Grindstone last year. Giving them an opportunity to play for the first time or continue to play hockey has changed their lives. Those are the stories we love to hear most.”

Last year’s tournament exceeded the group’s fundraising goals, raising approximately $10,000 to support girls hockey programs.

Completing the weekend tournament, the Foundation is also hosting Girls Rock the Rink/Esso Fun Days on July 21. The event is geared towards girls 5 to 18 years old and available for all skill levels. The free event offers a chance for girls to try hockey and learn from a roster of notable guest coaches and female role models.

For more information on both of these events, visit grindstoneaward.com.