The National Hockey League Players’ Association and the International Ice Hockey Federation are stepping up to support youth players impacted by the war in Ukraine.
The two organizations announced they would be donating $100,000 worth of equipment to “help Ukrainian youth continue playing hockey despite facing enormous challenges.” Bauer Hockey is providing the equipment and paying shipping costs to deliver it across Europe.
“NHL Players strongly support the meaningful work the IIHF is doing to assist displaced Ukrainian youth hockey players,” said Mathieu Schneider, NHLPA Special Assistant to the Executive Director, in a statement. “We are proud to make this equipment donation from the NHLPA Goals & Dreams program, which will help hundreds of young Ukrainian hockey players return to the ice in neighbouring countries.”
The first round of equipment was recently delivered to Poland where it will then be distributed to Ukrainian youth between the ages of 6 to 16 years old who are now living in Czechia, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Switzerland. A second round of deliveries will be made in the coming months as the IIHF identifies more youth in need.
The equipment donation includes 100 sets of Bauer hockey helmets, gloves and sticks, as well as 200 pairs of skates. Each player will also receive NHLPA tracksuits and hockey sweaters. Each set of equipment will be properly sized for the player receiving it and more than 550 youth will receive equipment after being displaced from their homeland due to the war.
“I would like to sincerely thank the NHLPA and Bauer for this generous donation to Ukrainian youth hockey,” said Luc Tardif, IIHF President, in a statement. “This is an amazing contribution to the already overwhelming show of support shown by the international ice hockey family for Ukraine’s young players.”