Earlier this month, Toronto Community Housing (TCHC) held their second annual Swim Meet Competition in partnership with the University of Toronto (UofT) and PPL Aquatics, Fitness and Spa Group Inc. Children from six TCHC communities spent eight weeks training and learning life-saving skills with lifeguards from PPL Aquatics, Fitness and Spa Group.
The fierce competition between more than 40 participants from 415 Willowdale, 215 Roywood, 90 Mornelle, 200 Wellesley, 5 Needle Firway and 15 Tobermory took place at UofT’s Benson Gallery 25m pool. Last year’s winner, 415 Willowdale, remained undefeated and took home the trophy.
“I’m so happy TCHC has this event! It’s awesome and I hope they continue to do it every year.” says, Tara Krause, parent of Nathaniel Howe, 2017 TCHC Swim Meet MVP winner. Tara has lived in the TCHC community for five years. She said Nathaniel, who also won MVP last year, was nervous, but very excited to compete.
Guest speaker and former UofT athlete, Vanessa Treasure kicked off the opening ceremonies. Vanessa began swimming competitively when she was eight years old at Mississauga Aquatics Club until university. She is a two-time National Champion of Canadian Interuniversity Sports, 2012 UofT Athlete of the Year and she won the 2015 Clara Benson Honour Award.
Vanessa said, “Being able to swim is a special skill; it builds confidence. I wanted to support the TCHC Swim Meet Competition so the participants know how amazing their efforts are and that each child is proud of this accomplishment.”
She went on to say that she thinks it’s important that the kids realize the essence of her favorite quote: “When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things.”—Joe Namath
Vanessa Treasure and participants who just finished racing.
Vanessa Treasure, former University of Toronto star athlete, gives an uplifting and motivational welcome to the TCHC Swim Meet participants. She told her story about how hard work and dedication made her a successful swimmer.
Boys 11 and under 25M freestyle heat about to get underway. Boys 12-14 years, competing in 50 M finals.
Swimmers get ready for the 4 x 25 M relay.
Girls 11 and under finalists for the 25 M freestyle (LEFT: Caitlin Moore, Outreach, Promotions, Community Partnerships Coordinator for University of Toronto).
Boys 10-12 years of age, 50 M freestyle finalists.
Community winners: last year’s winner 415 Willowdale took the trophy home again.
Team Relay 4 x 25 M winners (1st place: Willowdale; 2nd place: Firgrove; 3rd place: Roywoods).
Team Relay 4 x 50 M winners with the TCHC Strategic Planning & Stakeholder Relations team who volunteered at the event and made it a great success! (1st place: Roywoods; 2nd palce: Firgrove; 3rd place: Willowdale)