Streetfront, Vancouver

Streetfront provides disadvantaged youth with an opportunity to reengage with the larger educational structure through building up the students’ self-concept. Streetfront students gain confidence through daily PE lessons, regular long-distance runs and outdoor activities including camping, hiking, canoeing, snowshoeing, snowboarding, rock-climbing, mountain biking, organized sports, triathlon and marathon training. The quantity and quality of these activities in the last year has dramatically increased thanks to SHLF funding. This year the SHLF money was used to fund:

» Two complete camping trips (one in the Fall and one in the Spring)

» A visit to Cliffhanger climbing gym

» Snowboarding trips

» Mountain biking trips

» Supplies for marathon training

» Soccer boots

» Canoe rentals.

In addition Streetfront was able to obtain 14 new pairs of high-quality running shoes free of charge thanks to the Strachan Hartley Legacy Foundation’s connection with North Shore Athletics.  The largest indicator that this program’s success is regular student attendance as all kids that participate in the program had previously given up on school.  Streetfront students provide countless stories of inspiration and triumph.  Perhaps the most recent update from their teacher Trevor Stokes on the 2010 Vancouver Marathon sums it up best:

“People ask me all the time, what's it like working with kids, who push themselves to be better and I never really know what to say.  Often the words kind of escape me, because the stories are so vast and so numerous.  What does come to mind is an image, that tells me so much more.  I always get the kids to bring in their [marathon] medals so we can engrave their times and names on them but in my haste after the marathon I forgot to tell them that.  When I got back to school after my paternity leave (some 5 days later), I asked both Kyle and Willy to bring in their medals the next day so we can start the engraving process. They both reached into their pockets and took out the medals that had been sitting in their pockets since the day of the race. I called both of their moms and they both told me that the medals have never left their sight since the race. I guess that's what its about. Good kids feeling proud about themselves and their accomplishments.”