CSIO & DTRC receive Ontario Trillium Foundation support for unique project

Grant-ImageDancer Transition Resource Centre (DTRC) and Canadian Sport Institute Ontario (CSIO)are excited to announce they are recipients of a $250,300 grant from Ontario Trillium Foundation.

The funding, received in late 2014, will support an innovative three-year project bringing the dance and sport communities together in a collaborative partnership to explore career and life transition issues specific to their unique constituents – high performance athletes and professional dancers. This initiative will enable the sectors to share knowledge, best practices and networks and provide a platform for dialogue and future strategic partnerships.

Athletes’ and dancers’ physical and mental pursuits of excellence are consuming and relentless; theirs is a precarious existence that requires singular focus. A debilitating injury or an aging body no longer able to cope with the demands of training precipitates a significant transition in the life of an athlete and dancer. Dancers and athletes share strikingly similar issues and challenges in their career and life transitions.

“CSIO is thrilled to partner with the DTRC on this project and we would like to thank the Ontario Trillium Foundation for the grant to fund this important initiative,” said CSIO CEO Debbie Low. “Bringing the dance and sport communities together in a collaborative partnership will allow us to leverage resources and explore the issues and challenges that high performance athletes and professional dancers both experience around career transition in new, in-depth and innovative ways. Together our project will truly strengthen the resources and support available to the members of the sport and dance communities in Ontario.”

“The DTRC is extremely grateful to the Ontario Trillium Foundation for their support of this unique collaborative project. We are delighted to be working with our colleagues at CSIO on the issues affecting the transitions of these exceptional performers – dancers and athletes,” said Amanda Hancox, Executive Director, DTRC. “This exploration will provide both organizations with a deeper understanding of each other’s communities, focusing on our commonalities and the opportunity to foster further collaboration. It is a perfect occasion to celebrate the depth of talent and skill amongst our dancers and athletes which they carry beyond their achievements as performers.”

This three-year project led by CSIO and DTRC will include; rigorous research and extensive community consultation, a two–day conference in Toronto and will lay ground work for future cross–sector, community-based strategic partnerships. The venture will be inclusive of all stakeholders and provide forums for discourse and cooperation in the fields of research, education, outreach and organizational strategies and delivery models.

“As Game Plan advisor at CSIO, working on the frontlines with elite athletes as they undergo career transitions, I see firsthand the positive impact that such programming can have on elite performers,” says CSIO Athlete Career Transition Advisor, Dr. Rolf Wagschal. “Being able to partner with DTRC to bring more awareness to the issues surrounding career transition for elite performers (both from the sport and dance worlds), in addition to helping drive forward research and best practices for other practitioners such as myself is a great opportunity. I’ve been struck by the similarities in how dancers and athletes undergo career transitions, so this partnership is a natural fit.”

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