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Volunteering to share the joy of sports

“As a student-athlete, I recognize that I am extremely fortunate for all the enjoyable experiences I have had playing sports in my life. I want to do what I can to help children with autism gain some of these lifelong memories too.”

When Kyle McComb joined the Canucks Autism Network (CAN) as a volunteer this past June, he shared these incredibly inspiring words with us.

It is no surprise that after a summer supporting our Multisport and I CAN Bike day camps, he is our selection for CAN’s Exceptional Volunteer Award!

At the end of each season, we choose one volunteer who has truly gone above and beyond in their support for both staff and participants within our programs. A varsity baseball player for UBC, Kyle combined a clear passion for sports and giving back to his community to completely blow our staff away this summer.

Daily briefs with program staff consistently highlighted Kyle’s enthusiasm and natural ability to engage the kids:

“Kyle used clear language and always modeled for the participants what he needed them to do – showing the skills, in addition to telling.”

“He jumped right in! His energy is fabulous.” 

“Kyle jumped in as a coach and did amazingly well leading the entire softball station! In addition to demonstrating the skills with clear and simple instructions, he made sure to use our visual toolkit with the group as well!”

For more tips on engaging individuals with autism in a sports and rec environments, please visit our Helpful Resources webpage!

This Fall, Kyle returns to his busy schedule at UBC as a student-athlete. But as soon as his availability allows, he looks forward to continuing to make a difference in his new staff role as a CAN support worker.

For our participants to have athletes like Kyle to look up to is such an incredible benefit to our programs. Kyle’s genuine enthusiasm for making a difference in his community is representative of so many of the volunteers that CAN is lucky to have.

Each year, we benefit from over 600 volunteers that compassionately and generously donate their time. Whether it’s handing out CAN bracelets at a community info table or demonstrating the perfect swing of a bat in our Multisport program, we could not do what we do without volunteers like Kyle.

A huge thanks to Kyle and every CAN volunteer that makes our programs possible.

For more information on volunteering with the Canucks Autism Network, please visit our Become a Volunteer webpage!

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