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A Grassroots Thank You

By: Anonymous Hockey Director


Dear Topher,

I am a hockey director in the US and have been excited to read the blogs and listen to the podcasts. The Hockey Think Tank has a lot of great information and resources.

I am writing you today to express my sincere gratitude to all the volunteers who make our game great. We have managers, score keepers, parents who keep stats etc… However, I am specifically grateful to all the coaches who dedicate so much of their time and effort to the house league programs across the country. In our area, most of the house programs rely on Moms and Dads who don’t know much about hockey to volunteer to coach. The parents see that their kids love hockey and get involved to help as a family. In the US today, volunteer coaches are required to annually register with USA Hockey, take all the required CEP training (at least 10 hours of work) and take time to get screened through a law enforcement agency. This is no easy task, yet all these volunteers go through this process just to help our sport.

In our major metropolitan area there are roughly 40 hockey associations with an average of 12 house league teams. This would be about 1,000 volunteer coaches just in our area. These coaches do a great job planning practice, communicating with parents and most of all having a positive influence/relationship with our young players. As we all know, the cost to play hockey is crazy in most areas and the volunteer coach is vital to all the house league programs. Over my many years I have been lucky to meet so many volunteers who give countless weekends, season after season to the game of hockey. I have had the unique opportunity to interact with our coaches for over a decade and their attitude is caring and selfless. They are more interested in giving all players the opportunity to develop and have fun playing the greatest game on the planet. I admire the people who roll up their sleeves and get the job done. But then, isn’t that what hockey is all about!!!

Sincerely,

A grateful hockey director.