Thousands of young people in Winnipeg’s north end will be able to play more basketball this year on a new outdoor court at the Norquay Community Centre, Municipal Government Minister Drew Caldwell announced as part of the '100 Basketballs' event held on Sunday at Ralph Brown Community Centre.

“Improving the recreation facilities in Winnipeg will allow urban young people to discover the physical benefits that come from a healthy lifestyle,” Minister Caldwell said.  “We also know that world-class facilities attract world-class events, whether it’s the FIFA Women’s World Cup or a youth-organized event like the 100 basketballs Tournament.”

“Basketball has done a lot to keep me out of trouble.  I want more kids to have more opportunities to pursue their passion for sports,” said Lenard Monkman, a youth leader in the north end.  “Quality sport facilities mean more chances for young people to come together and inspire each to play harder and give their best.”

“All over the province young people will tell you they are proud of who they are, proud of their hometowns and neighbourhoods, and that they want to give back,” Jobs and the Economy Minister Kevin Chief, as he represented Minister Caldwell at the 100 Basketballs Tournament, a North-End neighbourhood event organized by Monkman.  “When we stand with Lenard and the youth he supports, we are showing them how important they are to us and to Manitoba’s future.”

The province is providing the Norquay Community Centre with funding for a new, state-of-the-art outdoor basketball court.  The project will include a new outdoor basketball court to replace two current courts that have fallen into disrepair.  The proposed outdoor basketball court project includes asphalt foundation with proper surfacing, nets and backboards, fencing and outdoor lighting, Minister Chief said, adding work on the project is expected to start in June.

“The young people we work with are ecstatic.  A new court will give them an avenue to exert some energy, do something positive and have some fun,” said Rita Richard, manager, Norquay Community Centre.

In August 2014, the Manitoba government committed $140,000 to the project through the Winnipeg Community Infrastructure Program, a three-year, $7.5-million program that provides grants to support not-for-profit or city-owned community recreation facilities within Winnipeg.  


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