Canoe Polo Hawke’s Bay has received a grant of $16,278 from NZCT towards 12 new sets of personal flotation devices, which will be used throughout the autumn and winter league competitions.
The PFDs are not only used as floatation devices in case a player has to complete a wet exit because of capsizing, but also to protect participants against injury. Hawke’s Bay Canoe Polo provide PFDs for all players for reasons of personal safety and it is important to wear ones that are correctly sized. This successful application means they can provide a full set of PFDs in both their Flaxmere and Clive pools, where the league competitions are held.
Originally established as part of the Hawke's Bay Canoe Club, canoe polo was brought to Hawke’s Bay in 1991 and formed its own identity in 2009. It rapidly grew to the point where the club now boasts over 700 members from the local community.
Chairperson Kelly Hepburn commented: “We were unbelievably surprised by and are extremely grateful for this amazing contribution from NZCT towards our club's PFDs. Canoe Polo Hawke’s Bay have worked so hard over the past year to build our amazing new facility, and to be able to furnish all of our courts with more gear to allow more players to play safely and comfortably means we can continue to grow this sport with more of our adult social players wanting to get back into a boat.
“Not only are we now able to get more people into more boats more often, but also to achieve our long-term goal of attracting more people to this venue to play one of the most fun and exciting sports right here in Hawke’s Bay. Our dream has long been to build our own canoe polo venue for the public to promote sport and active play with something completely different.
“I've been involved in canoe polo for 23 years. The most rewarding thing about being a part of this fantastic sport is the people. The kids are happy, the parents are supportive, and the team I get to work with to make this sport what it is in Hawke’s Bay is amazing!”