Whitecaps Need To Raise Community Profile

Portland Timbers took part in a community clean up today.

It was the culmination of the Club’s events for Earth Week which also saw the Timbers officially launch their “score a goal, plant a tree” program and offsetting the Club’s carbon footprint.

The Timbers have been excellent in getting in and about their local community, something in which the Caps seem to be severely lacking in at the moment.

Portland’s official website has a specific “Community” section and there are also features on all of their many environmental and sustainable programs. A quick look on the Whitecaps official website and it’s a very different story.

Sure there’s the stuff on the Whitecaps Foundation, but their goal really seems to be getting kids fit. Not really something that holds any interest to me and doesn’t make a massive difference to Vancouver or the world as a whole right now.

The Caps official site does state that the Foundation “supports local charities and not-for-profit organizations with donations of tickets to Whitecaps women’s games. Nice to see, but not really much of a reward or community input.

Portland leaves Vancouver way behind in this regard.

We highlighted their excellent involvement with Friends of Trees before in the blog. They’re going to be planting a tree for every goal that the Timbers score at home this season.

It’s been funny to showcase their strong eco-friendly programs in a week where ignorant journalism like Bill Archer’s piece on Big Soccer criticises the whole Timber Joey tradition for not being environmentally friendly for using a gas guzzling chainsaw and destroying trees.

All he needed to do was a little research.

Hopefully the Caps will get more community oriented soon. All we’ve really seen so far is how many corporate sponsors they can bring on board, but don’t hear a lot about what they’re giving back to the community.

I had initial discussions with a member of the Caps FO last year around the possibility of arranging a similar community clean up around Empire and the Hastings Sunrise community. That was around six months ago now. It would be great if they were still keen on this or any similar idea. Just something to show that they care.

Coming from a culture of mostly selfish sportsmen, who give little back to their communities, I love how much professional sportsmen in North America give back to their communities.

In Vancouver, the Canucks are second to none in this. The Lions and Giants are also good but so far we’ve seen little of this from the Whitecaps this season. Last season they had their excellent recycling promotion.

Some Whitecaps players are trying to make a difference though and Jeb Brovsky is one them.

His Peace Pandemic organization “aims to alleviate social injustice and facilitate cross cultural understanding. Through each interaction, Peace Pandemic aspires to nurture youthful leaders who espouse and practice peace in everyday life. We seek to teach nonviolence and justice, and encourage dialogue through sports”.

You can find out more about Peace Pandemic on their blog and also on Twitter.

Support Jeb and help him make a difference.

Hopefully we’ll have more similar endeavours to report from players and the whole Whitecaps organization soon.

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Authored by: Michael McColl

There is 1 comment for this article
  1. Anonymous at 15:09

    From Grandstander:

    I don't thin the Caps Foundation is misdirected. It's well targeted at the lazy kids that don't go out, which could have been me if I didn't get my first Nintendo until 1989. The Caps need to do a better job of supporting their own foundation and letting the public know that it's there, that the goal is an important one.

    However, children's charities seem to be all the rage. The Canucks do a great job withe their Canucks For Kids and all the charities that group help. Maybe a good thing for the Caps to do is direct their Foundation to the area that they feel will be most affected by the presence of their “proposed” stadium downtown. Union Gospel Mission, Salvation Army, anything to do with public transit advocation, and environmental impacts in Burrard inlet and surrounding parks or waterways. Star being a good neighbor now, not when you get approval to build.

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