Six-year-old Timothy begged his mother to let him take skating lessons after seeing one of the Reading Royals ice hockey games. Observing the players skate so quickly excited him. Timothy’s mother requested help paying for the skating lessons from the Royals Youth Hockey Fund of Berks County Community Foundation. Timothy started participating in the Royal’s Learn to Skate program not long after.
The Royals Youth Hockey Fund of Berks County Community Foundation was started in 2023 by the Reading Royals Hockey Club to provide financial support to youth who want to participate in hockey lessons, camps, or leagues.
“Hockey is a special kind of sport in which success depends on every single player pulling in the same direction and supporting one another,” says Dakota Procyk, Vice President of Operations at the Reading Royals Hockey Club. “This fund is a great opportunity to invest in the Berks County community and offers a chance for our local youth to get involved with hockey.”
Young people’s development and well-being are greatly impacted by youth sports. Their physical, emotional, social, and cognitive development is aided by them, and they provide a number of positive aspects, such as health and wellness, confidence, teamwork, and skill development.
Recipients of the fund explained how the fund made a difference and gave them a spark of hope.
“Receiving this grant has shown me we can still help each other. Cutting ice hockey out of our budget would have left a void in my son’s winter.”
“This fund helped allow my son to continue to play the game he loves so much while allowing me a little breathing room with inflation.”
Since the fund opened in July 2023, the Community Foundation has granted $12,535 to 18 children. The grants assisted with registration fees for several of the Royals’ youth programs, including Learn to Skate, Learn to Play, Youth League, and Selects Team programs.
Funding can cover registration fees and equipment. Applicants can request a Slapshot Starter Kit, which includes hockey skates, pads, and a stick. Applications are open year-round.
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To give to the Royals Youth Hockey Fund, visit: bccf.org/fund