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Xplore is proud to have sponsored Recreation Opportunities for Children (ROC) Eastman’s book fair back in April!

“It was fantastic! Total sales were $8,525 for the weekend. Kind of crazy for $1 and $3 books. We didn’t have a single moment without shoppers and many times, it was challenging to get through the aisles. It was awesome,” said Moni Loewen, ROC’s Executive Director.

Xplore’s $1,000 sponsorship helped support the administrative costs of the event, which brings the community together to raise money for a great cause.

“We cannot do these things without our sponsors, who cover all the costs associated, so we can raise the funds that we use to give back to ROC families that face multiple barriers to participation. This sponsorship is a very big deal to us. We are super grateful,” Moni said.

ROC is a registered charity that reduces barriers for children so they can participate in positive recreation activities.

Financial, transportation, language, mental and physical health barriers can prevent children from meaningful activities they require to lead healthy, fulfilling lives. Programs that ROC connects children to include art, music, nature, and sports. Moni says the opportunities are endless.

She and the ROC team have the honour of helping break down those barriers so that parents can support their kids in accessing those opportunities.

“My favourite part of my job are the days when we get to meet a new family and walk through barriers and solutions. I am forever amazed by our ROC families and their strength,” she said.

She told us about a recent experience with Ukrainian refugee family who recently became a ROC family.

“Their little girl who was deeply involved in gymnastics in the Ukraine and has been struggling since they arrived in Canada. We dove in, found an opportunity that worked for her and helped secure funding so she could participate and feel like herself again,” Moni explained.

Access to these opportunities makes a big difference in the community.

“There are obvious benefits for the child but also the family, as parents want to know their kids are happy and healthy. Every single time we see the child’s newfound enthusiasm spreads to their classmates, their friends, and the family's relationships. These ripple effects are just huge,” she said.

Many of ROC’s clients live in rural areas, some of which struggle to get reliable Internet.

Clients require an Internet connection for registration processes, applying for funding, online applications, and uploading financial information.

For families living in rural areas, sometimes taking music lessons, art classes, or attending book clubs online is more feasible than driving an hour to participate in a program.

“Everything is going online, which can be a barrier in itself, but if our families had good Internet access it would be a game changer,” Moni said.

Xplore is not only proud to sponsor charities like ROC that make a difference, but we're also invested in bringing cutting-edge fibre and 5G infrastructure to rural residents in the region.

To learn more about ROC Eastman and support the amazing work they do, visit their website.

If you live in the rural areas around Steinbach, Manitoba, where ROC serves many families, you can check Xplore's service availability here.