Oshawa (CAC) –According to research highlights by the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC), good coaching nurtures optimal growth and development of children and fosters the joy of sports. To develop our coaches in Canada, General Motors of Canada and the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) provided 60 $2,000 grants for coach skill development.

“Olympic dreams begin at the community club level and that is what GM’s Making Dreams Possible Program is all about” said Marc Comeau, GM of Canada’s vice-president of sales, service, and marketing.

“With support from the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC), these grants were designed to invest in coaches in communities across Canada. We believe that ongoing coach development at the grass roots level is the cornerstone to building our elite athletes of the future.”

“The CAC is pleased to be partners with GM through the Making Dreams Possible Program. In its first year, the program’s direct support of coach development touched over 5,000 coaches and nearly 70,000 athletes in 115 community clubs across the country. This program immediately impacts coach development and education and will ultimately benefit Canadian sport as more coaches are introduced to the National Coach Certification Program (NCCP),” commented Jean-Marie De Koninck, Chair, CAC Board of Directors.

“This grant will allow us to provide opportunities to expand the knowledge and experience base of our coaches so that they are better equipped to lead our young athletes as they pursue their dreams,” said Jean E. Pendziwol, Fundraising and Communications Coordinator for the Big Thunder Nordic Ski Club in Thunder Bay, Ontario. “The funding will help us to guide our youth towards athletic excellence and provide an environment where athletes grow as healthy, involved members of the community.”

Making Dreams Possible is a program developed by GM in cooperation with the Coaching Association of Canada, the governing body of Canada’s coaching education program and is designed to support coaches of Olympic and Paralympic Sports at the high performance and community levels.

Over the next three years, GM’s Making Dreams Possible program will provide a minimum of 100 grants of $2,000 each annually for coach development in local communities, and ten grants of $10,000 each annually to high performance athletes and their coaches. These grants will be used to fund special projects that develop the skills and abilities of elite and community level coaches.

Applications can be submitted by high performance athletes and their coaches for the elite grants and head coaches, technical directors or the president of local sports clubs can apply for the local sport club coaching awards. Application forms can be found through www.thedriveison.ca.

The next wave of local sport club and high performance applications closes on February 14th, 2008 with grants to be awarded in May.

About GM Canada

General Motors of Canada (GMCL) is engineering and manufacturing advanced environmental technologies ranging from Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation) and hybrid systems to E85 biofuel and fuel cell vehicles – more than any other auto company right here in Canada. Headquartered in Oshawa Ontario, GMCL employs more than 19,000 people nationwide. GM of Canada manufactures vehicles, vehicle powertrains, and markets the full range of General Motors vehicles and related services through 759 dealerships and retailers across Canada. Vehicles sold through this network include Chevrolet, Buick, Pontiac, GMC, Saturn, Hummer, Saab and Cadillac.

About the Coaching Association of Canada

The Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) is a not-for-profit amateur sport organization with the mandate to improve the effectiveness of coaching across all sports and at all levels of the sport system. With a mission of enhancing the experiences of all Canadian athletes through quality coaching, the CAC and its partners deliver a leading edge coaching system that has a goal of reaching 100,000 NCCP-trained coaches who will impact 1,000,000 athletes each year by 2010. Visit www.coach.ca for more information about coach education and training.