BC Wheelchair Sports believes that sport should be a safe and inclusive environment for all participants including athletes, coaches, staff, officials, classifiers, and volunteers. Everyone in our community should have the right to participate in an environment that is free of abuse, harassment, and discrimination.
BCWSA believes that protecting the health and welfare of everyone involved in sport should be our primary and collective responsibility. This is even more important when dealing with children and youth and that responsibility to protect them is shared by everyone within the sport community including coaches, administrators, and key volunteers.
We continue to work on educating our staff, coaches, and key volunteers on how to create, nurture, and promote a safe sport environment. To this end, all our staff, coaches, and board members are required to complete Commit to Kids Training from the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, and all staff, coaches, and volunteers are subject to the BCWSA Screening Policy.
How to Report Maltreatment
Individuals are encouraged to contact BCWSA directly if they have a concern, would like to lodge a complaint, or have something to report. Please see below for contact information as well as additional services and supports external to BCWSA.
BC Wheelchair Sports Association
Michelle McDonell – Interim Executive Director
firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-333-3520 x 208
BCWSA Board of Directors
Laurel Crosby – President
email@example.com or 604-910-8426
Ross Robinson – Director of Human Resources
firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-220-2930
The Canadian Sports Helpline
The Canadian Sport Helpline, funded by the Government of Canada, is a listening and referral service monitored by live operators. Users will have a choice of communicating via a toll-free phone line, emails, text, or live chat, in the official language of their choice.
This professional listening and referral service is available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week, by phone or text at 1-888-83SPORT (77678), and by email at email@example.com.
The helpline will provide you with advice, guidance, and resources on how to proceed/intervene appropriately in the circumstances. If you require assistance or would like to talk to a trained professional about a suspected incident of child abuse click here to find your local child welfare agency. If you suspect a child is in immediate danger, call 9-1-1 or your local police.
Athlete Wellness Program
Mental Health is a crucial piece of well-being, especially for athletes and people with disabilities!
BC Wheelchair Sports created the Athlete Wellness Initiative in 2015 to support the unique mental health needs of athletes with a disability and to break the stigma surrounding mental illness in the para sport community. Other Athlete Wellness Initiatives have included seminars, resources, and mental health first aid training for staff and coaches. If there is a service that you would like to access that you think may be supported by our Athlete Wellness Initiative in the realms of mental health and wellness, please feel free to reach out to any of our BCWSA Program Staff.
The resources are free and have been compiled through recommendations from Leanne Fielding (MA, CCC, MPC) who is an expert in the field of counselling, as well as information found on our network partner’s website – Spinal Cord Injury BC. Should you have any questions regarding the below services, or other inquiries relating to the Athlete Wellness Initiative, we encourage you to connect with your BC Wheelchair Sports staff.
Provincial-Wide Crisis Lines (for help by phone or chat anywhere in BC)
Provincal Suicide Hotline: 1-800-784-2433 – Open 24/7 if you or someone you know is considering suicide.
310 Mental Health Support Line: 310-6789 (no area code) – Open 24/7 for non-emergency emotional support and advice.
Online Chat Support for Youth: YouthInBC.com (Noon to 1AM)
Online Chat Support for Adults: CrisisCentreChat.ca (Noon to 1AM)
Foundry: foundrybc.ca – A great online resource for youth with lots of information and helpful info with contact numbers as well. They now offer virtual drop-in counselling sessions, peer support check-ins, and group offerings to young people ages 12-24 and their caregivers.
BC211: bc211.ca/help-lines – A free, confidential, multilingual service that links people to resources for help, where and when they need it. Help is available to people anywhere in British Columbia, 24/7 by calling or texting 211.
Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA): cmha.bc.ca
Need help NOW? Call 310-6789