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Jumpstart Kids Activity Kit:  Outdoor Adventure, a new pilot program aimed at getting kids involved in outdoor activity was launched today by Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities in partnership with the Manitoba government, announced Sharon Blady, Minister of Healthy Living and Seniors, and Dan Howlett, Director, Program Operations, Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities.

We need to be creative and get our kids outside enjoying activities that keep them moving and engaged,” said Minister Blady.  “By partnering with Jumpstart, we’re giving more kids the opportunity to learn and explore.”

The Jumpstart Kids Activity Kit:  Outdoor Adventure program builds on the successful Jumpstart Kids Activity Kit program, launched in 2010.  It provides sport and recreational equipment to communities and organizations that engage children and youth from low-income families.  Last year, 1,500 kids in Manitoba benefited from the Jumpstart Kids Activity Kit program enabling them to participate in sports such as badminton, basketball and soccer. 

Outdoor Adventure Kits are available for kids of all ages.  Activities include fishing, geocaching, hiking, biking, camping, canoeing, swimming and kayaking.

“We’re passionate about getting kids outside and active, and we’re pleased to deepen our relationship with the government of Manitoba through the launch of the Jumpstart Outdoor Adventure pilot program,” said Mr. Howlett.  “The benefits to being active, especially for children developing social and physical skills, are tremendous and our goal is to provide community organizations with customized tools to deliver outdoor activity programs for kids who wouldn’t typically have the opportunity to participate due to financial barriers.”

Two community organizations from Portage la Prairie – Recreation Opportunities for Children and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Portage la Prairie – are the first groups to apply to receive the Jumpstart Kids Activity Kit:  Outdoor Adventure.  These organizations qualified and will be delivering programming using the new kits this summer.

“With the help of the new kits, our new ‘North End Summer Day Camp’ will enhance our summer programming and provide learning experiences for many children,” said Lynne Parker, Recreation Supervisor, Recreation Opportunities for Children.

“We applied for the Outdoor Adventure Kit so that the children of our community can learn new skills and have fun at the same time,” said Dawn Froese, Executive Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Portage la Prairie.  “We chose the geocaching activity kit because it is something that anyone can do anywhere – you can do it by yourself or with family and friends.”

These activity kits are part of Jumpstart’s commitment to helping kids in Manitoba.  Since 2005, with the support of Canadian Tire Dealers and others, Jumpstart has distributed over $20 million and has directly helped over 20,000 children in Manitoba.

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The Province of Manitoba is distributing this release on behalf of Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities and the Government of Manitoba.

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