Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Individual child grant recipient story – Jumpstart

From Cleats to College -Learn How Daniel is Paying it Forward

By: Jumpstart Staff

June 29, 2023

Daniel was ten when he started playing soccer with friends in his new neighbourhood. He loved playing and improved quickly, but it wasn’t until he was fourteen that a friend suggest he try out for team.

“He invited me. I wanted to get better by playing against people who are better than me,” Daniel said. “And of course, have an official jersey! My friend used to tell me all his stories of playing in tournaments in other cities and I wanted to experience that too. I asked me friend when try out were and played my very best on that day. The next day I was informed I made the team! “

Daniel was beyond excited, but the email he got afterwards was a huge blow.

“The coaches emailed us to share the times we practice, but also the price of gear and fees. Surprisingly, the fees were so high! At the time my parents couldn't afford to pay for me and my brother. “

Daniel knew his parents couldn’t afford the registration fees, let alone the gear, jerseys and trips to tournaments. Daniel decided to take matters into his own hands. He did some research online and found Jumpstart, then quickly grabbed his parents to apply for Individual Child Grants for both him and his 10-year-old brother.

Both boys received the funding they needed and found spots on the team they had been hoping for!

“My time on the team was so fun,” Daniel remembers. “I played goalkeeper. I had to develop courage to save those balls hurtling towards me!”

Being on the team also kept Daniel busy. “We'd practice twice a week and tournaments were twice a month. It was a lot of time.” But he feels like that time was well spent.

“I feel being involved in sports influenced who I am today. It gave me the skills to be resilient, courageous, and to always fight hard for what I want. I also gained an important friendship with my coach. He works full time at my community college.

“I am studying Business at college and my plan is to transfer to university to complete my Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting. “

When Daniel saw an event at his college was raising funds for Jumpstart, he was happy for the chance to participate, help out and give back so other kids could have the same opportunity he benefitted from.

“It was no problem! Jumpstart helped me out when I needed it and I'm happy to give back,” he said. “I think everyone should consider supporting Jumpstart because each time you donate, you are not just helping a kid play sports but helping them gain valuable, fundamentals, values and skills needed throughout life.”