NewsOther NewsFast and Female to Host Second Northern Youth Empowerment Weekend presented by First Air

FasterSkier FasterSkierMarch 23, 2011
Normal Wells, NT / Canmore, AB – Fast and Female will be hosting its second Northern Youth Empowerment Weekend in the Northwest Territories on April 8, 9, and 10, 2011. Following a successful event held in Yellowknife in 2010, the Fast and Female team is traveling to Norman Wells this year for a stimulating weekend aimed at aboriginal girls in cross-country skiing between the ages of 9 to 19 years old.

This once-in-a-lifetime camp will be led by two inspiring female ambassadors from the Northwest Territories – former National Ski Team member, Sarah Daitch, and 4-time Olympian, Sharon Firth. Firth and twin sister Shirley, born in Inuvik, were the product of a pioneering program to introduce skiing to Canada’s First Nations and Inuit and were on the national cross-country ski team for 17 years.

Unlike typical Fast and Female events held over just one day but in keeping with the organization’s mission of increasing the retention of girls in sports, the 2011 Northern Youth Empowerment Weekend presented by First Air in Norman Wells will take place over three days and will involve 50 young female skiers. The participants will be flown in from fifteen NWT Communities and this year’s camp will have a special focus on encouraging youth participation in the Sahtu and Beaufort Delta Regions.

Throughout the jam-packed weekend, participants will have the opportunity to improve their skills on snow, learn about ski maintenance, enjoy a dance lesson, do yoga, take part in various seminars on leadership and personal growth, and make new friends. The weekend will conclude with a Community Ski Day featuring a distance ski challenge. All activities will be led by Daitch and Firth as well as local instructors.

“The Northern Youth Empowerment Weekend is an opportunity to inspire and excite northern girls – by building confidence and leadership skills,” said Sarah Daitch, Fast and Female ambassador from Forth Smith. “Our young women skiers will feel empowered by connecting with other like-minded youth from across the North.”

Thanks to the generous support of many local, territorial and national sponsors, participation to the event is free including air travel, accommodation, food and giveaways from Fast and Female and its sponsors. Participation to this camp is limited to 50 young women who have demonstrated consistent commitment to cross-country skiing throughout the winter and who embody a dedication to the healthy and active lifestyle.

“At the end of the weekend, we hoped the camp will awaken the girls’ interest in becoming leaders in their communities to ultimately empower others to make good choices with respect to sport and health – after all, sport is such a tremendous vehicle for personal growth,” said Marie-Hélène Thibeault, Executive Director for Fast and Female. “We are thrilled to be partnering with many government entities, private sponsors, donors and local volunteers to make this special camp a success and ensure that we continue to positively impact lives.”

Registration for the highly anticipated event is almost complete with a few spots left. Information concerning registration can be obtained by contacting Karen Johnson at (867) 669-8379 or (867) 920-4521. The deadline to submit a candidate is March 23, 2011.
This very unique event is made possible thanks to valuable local partners such as First Air, the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Sahtu District Education Council, the NWT Ski Division, the Colville Lake School Board, the Sport North Federation, the Jokabeca Foundation at The Calgary Foundation, Soroptimist International, the Ski North Program, and the Lambert Family. Fast and Female’s national sponsors – including Best Buy, Buff Multifunctional Headwear, Clarins Canada, Cold-FX, and Cross-Country Canada – are also providing resources to make this event possible.

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