On Ice Programs
Everything required to play hockey is provided to the children for free. First they are taught how to put on their gear, then how to skate and eventually how to become more self assured and resilient. HEROS uses hockey as a tool to help these young Canadians grow. Participants in HEROS Future Stars, range from grades four through eight. Youth are identified through partner schools or social service agencies as candidates for HEROS programs.
As HEROS participants age, their involvement with the program is maintained with weekly programming however the nature of the responsibilities and the outcomes for the participants changes accordingly. As youth progress through HEROS and grade school, it is necessary that they play hockey with similar aged children, and also that they receive even more life skills training to prepare them for life in high school and beyond. The All Star program is aimed at youth in grades eight and higher who have successfully transitioned from the Future Stars program. It will provide them with the ongoing mentorship, life-skills training, and engagement in positive and productive programming that can dramatically enhance their opportunities for success as they approach and move into independent adulthood. The mentorship program will expose HEROS participants to workshops in areas such as:
- Conflict resolution and healthy relationship workshops
- Drug awareness and addiction prevention
- First aid training
- Financial literacy
- Hockey coaching and refereeing training
- Introduction to vocational opportunities and training
- Professional skills such as resume writing, interviewing and personal presentation training
- Tours of local post secondary institutions
- Work experience placements and internships
In addition to the weekly programs offered by HEROS, select cities provide a week long summer camp filled with hockey, and life skills education. Previous summer camp activities have included trips to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, design lessons from Nerd Corps and even a trip to a professional fire department’s training ground.