2020 Hockey New Zealand Community Initiative of the Year – Manawatū Sports Outdoor Holiday Programme (Manawatū)
While Covid was a disruptive force for many sports during 2020, there were a few shining lights one of which was the Manawatū Sports Outdoor Holiday Programme.
The collaborative holiday programme involving cricket, football, hockey, netball and rugby provided young people with an opportunity to be exposed to different sports at one event.
This was the first big collaboration project of its kind in the Manawatū region which saw 117 youngsters aged between five and 18 participate in five outdoor sports and four indoor activities on six days over a two-week period in July.
Those who designed the programme also wanted it to be more than just a participation opportunity. 15 spaces were provided free for families who could not afford the registration fee, and meals were sourced for each participant through a shared sponsor.
Coaches across the sports also shared knowledge and learnings to ensure they delivered the sessions in a way that was beneficial and fun for the participants.
The success of the July programme has led to interest from more sports to join future combined events.