By Emanuel Sequeira
This summer season, Fernie Ghostriders assistant coach Thomas Skelton will hit the street on his bike to carry consciousness to psychological well being.
His focus is the MindRight for Athletes Society run by Kelowna Chiefs alum Myles Mattila. Skelton (pictured above) will depart Fernie and cycle to Kimberley throughout his first day. From there, day two will end in Creston, then to Grey Creek, on day three. He’ll keep there for an evening then hit the street for Nelson on day 4.
Skelton may have a journey day to succeed in Kelowna, his residence base, and the next day he’ll bike 16 kilometres each 4 hours for 48 hours within the Okanagan. Skelton is seeking to get all 12 legs of his trip sponsored and can bike each 4 hours beginning at midnight, 4 a.m., 8 a.m. and midday. This plan will permit him to cowl the 2 Kootenay Worldwide Junior Hockey League (KIJHL) conferences in some type in a secure method.
Skelton selected MindRight due to the work Mattila does and needs to do for athletes. In his function with the Ghostriders, and likewise an elementary faculty vice-principal at Rocky Mountain Elementary College in Elkford.
Skelton stated, “psychological well being is at all times a spotlight to be sure that stigma isn’t connected and that everybody is ready to talk about social-emotional well being points in a constructive approach.”
“It’s an space I’m keen about and it simply appeared like a trigger I’d wish to contribute to in a roundabout way,” added Skelton. “I can’t say sufficient good issues about all he (Mattila) has performed. Clearly, psychological well being is one thing close to and expensive to me, so with my involvement in our league and his, it simply appeared like an ideal match to lift consciousness and funds for an ideal trigger. I do know that Mattila has performed an terrible lot in a really small time-frame. It was a no brainer to attempt to collaborate to assist MindRight proceed to maneuver ahead and proceed to do the good work they do.”
Mattila says he’s lucky to have Skelton assist the MindRight initiative and feels it’s improbable he desires to lift consciousness surrounding psychological well being. When approached by Ghostriders coach-GM Jeff Wagner and Skelton, Mattila wished to assist Skelton’s occasion any approach he may.
“Throughout COVID-19, there was a rise in isolation and it has been tough for a lot of people,” stated Mattila. “I imagine this trip will assist shine a lightweight on the tough topic and assist give braveness to people to talk up. Having a person like Thomas take initiative and need to assist the trigger is super.”
Mattila believes this occasion will assist construct neighborhood connections and networking alternatives to assist increase consciousness. Having Skelton bike by way of communities within the Okanagan area will assist spotlight constructive initiatives throughout this tough time.
Mattila says the 12 months for MindRight has been tough for the reason that pandemic because it created a scarcity of in-person fundraisers and gatherings. Nevertheless, that hasn’t stopped the previous Chief from working.
“I’ve been networking and planning to proceed the Remembering Grant Sheridan Memorial Scholarship,” he says, including he has one semester left of his Bachelor of Enterprise diploma research and can use his data to implement new packages and concepts when he’s ready to take action.
Skelton hopes to lift cash for MindRight and is actively looking for sponsors to donate, together with a clothes possibility.
He started biking throughout COVID-19 as a technique to get train and it has grown from spin courses to extra endurance primarily based rides. Skelton believes it is a nice technique to attempt to get some publicity for MindRight and the league whereas doing one thing he enjoys. This additionally forces him out of his consolation zone for private progress.
Skelton’s spouse Lisa can be an enormous assist by his aspect, together with their youngsters Kinley, Gregory and Amelia. Lisa is a registered therapeutic massage therapist who will assist him alongside the trip.
He anticipates the trip to be a grind, however he has been coaching with comparable size rides and spin courses. As soon as he hits the street, “it is going to be an endurance trip like I’ve by no means been on earlier than. I’m excited in regards to the alternative to develop in addition to increase consciousness and funds for such a worthwhile trigger.”
Anybody who’s concerned about sponsoring Skelton throughout this journey might contact him at [email protected].
Emanuel Sequeira is Director of Communications for the KIJHL