By Rizwana Shaikh, Federation of Calgary Communities
The Temple Community Association (TCA) is dedicated to engaging all residents in the community by hosting various free events to appeal to every age group.
They meet weekly on Thursday afternoons, including the summer months, to catch up and talk about future events. Most of the TCA board members attend, along with other community volunteers, to help plan and give their input.
“We have such a nice group of people (volunteers and board members) it’s unbelievable,” said Bob Spector, president at TCA.
This year, on February 19, TCA held a Family Skate Day in combination with a Black History Month Celebration. It featured a free BBQ supplied by Ron Propp, a TCA board member, as well as jerk chicken and Jamaican patties supplied by Marcia Brown, the owner of Krazy Jerk Chicken.
Brown was also the one who volunteered to organize the entertainment and celebration for Black History Month. She contacted churches in the area and organized traditional African dancers to perform and encouraged children from her family to sing traditional songs for everyone. Residents had a chance to experience something different and were full of smiles making new connections on Family Day.
Spector believes the residents in the community engage better when they have a variety of different programs to participate in.
“We try to hold a number of events to appeal to different age groups and it’s all free because we want to bring more people into the community,” he said.
TCA opened their tennis courts this summer with tennis lessons for children on June 9. The free ActivateYYC event had tennis balls and rackets for attendees to use and a coach from Calgary Tennis Association who provided 45-minute lessons to children in various age groups.
“The parents that were with the kids (at the tennis event) were quite amazed that their child showed an interest in tennis,” said Karen Moisan, vice president at TCA.
She says she’s seen these families return to the courts after the lessons and was happy that families were enjoying the facilities at the community centre. They received positive feedback and got inspired to hold lessons again next year.
Even though many volunteers and board members take vacations during the summer, Temple Community Association still host events and continue building upon the engagement they receive from their residents. The weekly Thursday Meetings pose as an idea generating hot spot that results in a close knit community.