Timberwolves FC Families
Over the past six years we have seen the academy programs grow from 16 players to nearly one hundred and go from a fall/winter program to a fall/winter/spring/summer and last year we started a Teams Program. This without advertising or promotion. It has been word of mouth through the families like yours who have shared with others that Timberwolves FC is a program that young players have enjoyed and we are grateful for this.
A few factors have impacted our ability to do everything that we have wanted over the past few years. First, a year ago BC Soccer changed their membership structure, which meant our EPIC province wide 'Associate Membership' was no longer valid (an Associate Membership is what allowed us to play in tournaments/competitions as our own identity). BC Soccer had informed us that since they decentralized, EPIC must apply for associate membership or full club membership in each district where we run programs. Recently EPIC has been awarded an Associate Membership by the Lower Island Soccer Association (LISA) where we have operated since 2014. We have also asked the NIYSA if there is the ability to apply in this district for an associate membership. It has been important that we work inside the systems set out by the governing body. Second, we have also seen a soccer community divided in Prince George and with that there have been challenges and roadblocks to even operating as an academy. With the help of the families we have made it through this process and found ways to provide opportunities for players and coaches to grow.
Recently there have been a number of critical changes in the Prince George soccer scene. We are now at a time to make a step that could start to bring some unity to the soccer community and, at least, not have players/families pulled in multiple directions.
TFC has had discussions with PG Impact on two fronts.
First, around direction in coach and player development. In discussions with PG Impact, I will take on a role that will assist with coach development. This in turn will help the players.
The second part aligns TFC with the PG Impact as an affiliate academy. This is a partnership, not an amalgamation of the two entities. Timberwolves FC and PG Impact will remain separate while working closely together. Families can register for PG Impact Team based programs on their website while continuing to register for TFC Academy through the EPIC registration system.
As a result, the TFC Academy program will continue with Jo at the helm, to aspire to provide the environment that so many young players have enjoyed. On a team front, coaches from the 2022 TFC Teams program will be welcomed into PG Impact to coach in the age groups that they have been working with at TFC.
Of course there are other benefits to working alongside PG Impact. The Travel Teams Competitive Program now moves to the Rotary Fields as a PG Impact program. PG Impact indoor programming will also be possible during the winter at the PG Impact indoor facility, and players at the appropriate age groups will have the possibility of playing in provincials under PG Impact.
Costs have always been a topic of discussion. PG Impact has proposed that they will provide a $100 rebate off of the club program to any players who register in both PG Impact ‘Option 1’ and Timberwolves FC for the Spring/Summer programs. If a player is too young for Option 1, then this also applies to the grassroots category during registration. This gets the price close to the pricing of Timberwolves FC Teams program last spring and summer.
TFC will continue to have year round academy training and we are looking at a kick-off tournament on Labour Day and an end of winter program at Easter. Additional travel opportunities, jamborees and exhibition games will continue to be offered. The Spring and Summer period becomes a time where players can attend tournaments, including provincial championships play-downs, as PG Impact.
The aim of this effort from PG Impact and TFC is to recognize that there have been big changes and working together for soccer is better than working separately. We will continue to think of families, keeping our emphasis on a positive environment for player development as we move towards this target, for all players in Prince George and the North.
Your team coaches have been a big part of this process and are a great resource for you. We have all committed to answering questions that you may have.
For more information on PG Impact programming, go to: https://www.pgysa.bc.ca/
Neil & Joanne