Letters to the editor.

LETTER: Resident urges Kimberley City Council to rebuild gymnastics centre

Dear City of Kimberley Council Member

I am writing to you, as a community member and active True Sport citizen member, in support of rebuilding a gymnastics facility for the residents of Kimberley and area. I urge you to bring this important issue to topic at an upcoming council meeting . If you will not support a rebuild, please at least send it to Council so that we all may understand and hear deliberation of this issue.

The past few years have been difficult for all community members. The loss of this important community centre is an additional burden on our youngest community members. Think of the families impacted by the loss of the daycare. Think of the children who physically and mentally benefited from the gymnastics programs. Think of my six-year-old daughter, who in one week lost her gymnastics class and her ski lessons. She will be suffering from the impact of that, both physically and mentally, for the entire winter.

Here is a reminder of why gymnastics and all sports are so important to the community.

Sport is a Valuable Community Asset – it contributes to the well-being of the entire community.

Sport promotes Ethical Conduct & Inclusion – The low cost of the Gymnastics program made it possible for everyone to get involved and stay involved.

Sport strengthens connections – We joined gymnastics as newcomers to Kimberley. Gymnastics promotes friendship, trust, cooperation and respect.

Sport support Excellence – I loved looking at the FB Page for the best stretcher, or team member of the day! Teams and athletes carry the hearts and hopes of the community wherever they compete. Gymnastics helps team members to be the best they can be, in and out of the gym.

Sport fosters Healthy, Active Lifestyles and Inspires people to get active and stay active, Fit for Life.

Sport celebrates contribution – The Gymnastics team recognize and honour the people – coaches, organizers, officials and volunteers – whose contribution makes sport possible.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read this letter.

Your concerned constituent,

Lecia Furber

Letter to the mayor

On December 13/2021 our community gymnastics club burned down. It was the home of the crickets daycare and a place that many gymnasts called their second home. Being a part of the club was like having an extended family. It has now been over a week since that devastating sad day when my daughter lost her second home. She’s been going there since she was 3. Started out going to the crickets daycare then joining gymnastics. She trained 9 hours a week there. Her along with many of her teammates were training to go to provincials in the spring. To represent our community. The town of Kimberley. 2 days prior to the fire was the first competition in 2 years in house that they got to compete in with their family members present. Things were just starting to get back to normal for them. Their dreams and hopes were starting to come back alive. They were getting that drive back. Setting goals for themselves. Getting excited for days ahead.

Again it has now been over a week since that awful night where my daughter and her teammates’ hopes and dreams came crashing down. Over a week and not one mention of the devastation from you, our mayor. No support. Not a word. It’s been over a week of questions from my daughter that I don’t have the answers to. Over a week where you, our mayor clearly show no support for our children.

I do remember you coming to Coconut Cup and handing out medals to all our kids. We brought in 225 kids from out of town to compete. Was that just for a picture?? Some publicity??

Yet when another tragic fire strikes our ski hill you can post about it and show your support several times in just a few days. Hours even.

So I ask you, our mayor, where were you? What were you doing while we were and still are picking our children up off the ground. Wiping away their tears. Trying to answer their questions. What do I tell my daughter when she asks me where she will train? What do I tell her when she asks why someone would do this to her gym. Her second home. Her family.

Where were you and why aren’t you doing something about it. Why aren’t you showing any support for these community members. These children. These athletes that represent Kimberley BC. Why haven’t you even acknowledged that this terrible event has even happened in our town.

6 posts on the fire at the ski hill and not a single mention of the gymnastics centre. Do the children who go to school here and train many hours a day not matter to you? What about the people who have lost their jobs. Do they not matter to you either? There are 20 competitive kids. 85 recreational kids and 28 in the Crickets daycare. Pre Covid there were 50 kids in the daycare and 8 employees.

Do these children of Kimberley, their parents and all other families of past and future who have used or would have used the gymnastics facility mean nothing to you and the rest of city council? We will remember your lack of interest in what is a major crisis to a large number of Kimberley citizens on Election Day.

Heidi Grainger

President of Kimberley Gymnastics Club

December 22/2021