March 3, 2003

Ford dealers help collect used hockey equipment for youth

Toronto, Ontario – During the month of March, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario residents can donate used hockey equipment to their local Ford dealers to support a used hockey equipment drive for local youth. The program is being run in aid of the Wayne Gretzky Foundation – the Great One’s new charitable organization dedicated to providing youth throughout North America with the opportunity to experience hockey.

During the month of March, Ford dealers are accepting donations of good-quality, used hockey equipment for youth in need. The equipment drive runs at participating Ford and Ford Lincoln dealers in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.

“The Ford Dealers’ Hockey Equipment Drive is a wonderful opportunity for us to support Wayne Gretzky and his Foundation’s mission to bring hockey to children who wouldn’t otherwise be able to play the game,” said Greg Jones, Program Manager, Ford Dealers Hockey Equipment Drive. “As hockey supporters, I know the people of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario will get behind this excellent cause.”

All equipment provided in safe, working condition is welcome. Some of the most needed items include: children’s skates, helmets, sticks, goalie equipment and gloves. Each Ford dealership will then work with local community partners to distribute donated equipment to local youth in need.

“There are so many kids that love the game of hockey, but will never have the chance to play,” said Gretzky. “Hockey is expensive – the equipment, the ice time, the practices all cost money…money some families just don’t have. That’s why we created the Wayne Gretzky Foundation. With the support of our partners, Ford and the Ford Dealers, we will strive to ensure that every child who wants to play hockey is able to do so.”

Ford of Canada and the Ford Dealer Associations announced their sponsorship of the Wayne Gretzky Foundation in January. The Ford Dealers Hockey Equipment Drive is the Foundation’s first official Canadian initiative. The Ford team also plans to work with the Foundation to develop other programs in the future.

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