June 8 2019 - Cabana & Polson Pier
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Your Team. Three Sports. One Day.

The MLSE Team Up Challenge presented by Ford is a unique, multi-sport tournament where teams of 8-10 players compete in basketball, soccer, ball hockey, beach volleyball and beach dodgeball.

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My name is Andrew Tucker and currently I interned at MLSE LaunchPad this past Winter. Just a little about myself and my background; I’m a Special Event Management student at George Brown College, I play for Team Canada’s Para-volleyball team (played in Toronto’s Pan Am games), and with that I’m very involved in the parasport community in the GTA.

Because of my history in Parasports I was given the opportunity at MLSE LaunchPad to lead the Adaptive Sport programming with the youth there. From drawing up the program plan to executing it. The program was a part of LaunchPad's nine-week sports cycle and the reception from the youth has been amazing. Some of the sports we played were Sitting Volleyball and Wheelchair Basketball. We also played Wheelchair Rugby and Wheelchair Tennis. We taught them the history of the game, the rules and differences from its able-bodied counterpart and asked them what the challenges are of the parasports and how they respond to it.

For a lot of the kids it helped level the playing field for those who are smaller or not as athletic as others because now to succeed you must think outside the box. You can’t rely on your ability to run, or your ability to jump high. With this we see the kids start to pass more, communicate better and really work together – it was rewarding to watch.

It was a new and fun challenge to them. It was also something that kids don’t ever really get exposed to so it was a great learning opportunity for them and it gave them a completely new perspective on sports. Attendance for the program was great. All the kids who showed up on day one came back every week and the group grew by one or two kids every week.

A few special visitors even stopped by for our roller sledge hockey day – Toronto Maple Leafs Alumni Dan Daoust & Peter Ing! 

- MLSE LaunchPad Team

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