The Sport Information Resource Centre
The Sport Information Resource Centre

Today, the Ottawa Sport Council is launching a community-widereturn to play roadmap aimed at inspiring confidence, reassuring families and supporting Ottawa’s active return to sport.  The Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap establishes a community-wide resource that will be continually updated to reflect how Ottawa-area sport is impacted by the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

As sport progressively opens, the “look and feel” is different and will be for some time. With this new reality, the main theme of the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap is to educate athletes, families, coaches and community sport administrators on the risk-management frameworks implemented and re-emphasize the importance of sport in our overall mental and physical well-being, regardless of how much sport has changed. 

How did the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap Come to Be?

In early June, the Ottawa Sport Council (OSC) Return to Play Roadmap Project brought together 70+ local sport organizations and the City of Ottawa to promote and enable the resumption of sport in our community.  With such diverse stakeholders collaborating, the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap is unique because it has been designed by the Ottawa sport community for all members of the community.  It is focused on developing tools for athletes of all ages and levels, their families and local sport organizations to facilitate a safe and enjoyable Return to Play experience in the COVID-19 era.

“It’s been amazing to see the entire sport community come together like this,” says Marcia Morris, Executive Director of the OSC. “We’re all sport. It doesn’t matter the activity, the size of the club or association, or the ability level of the participants, we all recognize there is an extraordinary opportunity and need here to provide hands-on support as the community starts to experience life after lockdown.”

 What is the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap?   

The Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap is a web-based tool that provides a step-by-step guide specific to Ottawa-area sport participants. Based upon guidelines from public health officials at the community, provincial and federal levels, the key elements of the Roadmap include:  

  • Simple, user-friendly tools and templates that will assist local organizations properly prepare for the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions;
  • Templates and guidelines to minimize risk and to ensure that all the proper insurance and legal measures are in place; and
  • Recommendation of private and public sector funding opportunities to help sport clubs and associations survive short-term financial challenges brought on by the pandemic and laying the groundwork and sharing “best-practices” for long-term sustainability.
  • Ottawa-centric webinars for sports administrators during summer and fall regarding return to play issues that directly impact the day-to-day function of organizations 

“There’s some great work being done across Canada and in other parts of the world – we would like take advantage of all that,” adds Morris. “Timing is critical and we simply can’t afford to start from scratch. So, we’re pulling together the most relevant materials and customizing them for use here in Ottawa.”

Why is the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap Important?

The ultimate goal of the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap is to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the Ottawa sport community. While the retention of local athletes is paramount, the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap supports the underlying theme that united all of the volunteers involved in this project – Our Community Needs Sport Now, More Than Ever.

How do I get more information on the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap?

Check out the Ottawa Return to Play Roadmap to see how itcan be tailored for your organization.

For further information, please contact:

Marcia Morris, P. Eng

Executive Director, directrice générale

Conseil du sport d’Ottawa Sport Council

About Ottawa Sport Council
As the unified voice of amateur sport in Ottawa, the Ottawa Sport Council (OSC) facilitates advocacy and growth for all community sport organizations

We believe that there should only be positive experiences in sport