If you’re keen to support Indigenous youth getting up on the mountain, here’s your chance.
The First Nations Snowboard Team (FNST) for the Kamloops region is holding a raffle, which will serve as one if its main fundraising events for the season. Money raised will go towards paying for the cost of coaching and equipment, all of which is covered by the team for participants.
This year, 32 Indigenous youth are involved with the program.
Leeann Eustache, one of the organizers of the raffle, said the club has been a terrific outlet for her son, helping him build his confidence.
“He’s hoping he can one day go up [to Sun Peaks] with his friends,” she said.
The FNST has so far been up twice this year. The team is easy to pick out, as the riders sport cool black jackets with Indigenous artwork on the back.
Established in 2004, the FNST organization has hundreds of members and 12 regional teams across Canada.
The FNST recreation program offers a season pass, 10 days of coaching, along with youth leadership, mentoring and instructor-training programs.
The FNST high performance team consists of experienced snowboarders who have an aspiration to compete.
“They compete at B.C. provincials, Western Canadian championships, with the goal of competing at nationals, NorAm and World Cup, with the ultimate goal of the Winter Olympic Games,” said Eustache.
FNST athletes are also given the opportunity to become certified snowboard instructors, allowing increased employment options.
All FNST members must sign athlete agreements requiring them to maintain a C+ average in school or be seeking tutoring, not smoke/vape or drink alcohol, be a community member of good standing and attend 90 per cent of all organized activities.
The FNST raffle is registered through the British Columbia Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch.
Tickets are $5 each or two for $10.
First prize is $1,000, second is $750, third is $500, and fourth is $250.
Only 2,000 tickets will be sold. The cut off date for ticket sales is March 11, with the draw being conducted on March 14.
If you’d like a ticket you can contact Lee Ann Eustache on Facebook, text her at 250 318 0304 or email her at email@example.com. E-transfers will be accepted.
Joel Barde, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Sun Peaks Independent News Inc.