NKB in The Community
It has come to our attention over the last few months that there is a perception in the Eastern Ontario swimming community that NKB members only help at NKB meets, and yet we expect other community members to help at our meets so we can make more money and keep our fees down.
We thought it was important that we write to you, our members, so that YOU can understand what we do as a club, both for your own knowledge and so that you can correct any misinformation that you hear. All of us are harmed when these negative suggestions spread through our community.
NKB Helps in the Community
- Electronics Support: We provide significant help with electronics for other swim meets.
- Maintenance: The electronics at the Nepean Sportsplex are not solely for use by NKB. But, NKB provides the people, skills and funds to keep the electronics operational for everyone’s benefit. We spend approximately $7,500/year and provide upwards of 100 hours of our volunteers’ time to maintain the equipment.
- Support for Other Clubs / Organizations at swim meets: NKB provides free electronics services* for many swim clubs and other organizations so that they can hold swim meets throughout the year. This year alone, NKB members have volunteered their time (or will volunteer their time) to setup, operate and tear-down electronics for the following meets:
- October – Swim Ottawa – 1 day meet plus setup/teardown
- February – High School – 1 day meet plus setup/teardown
- February –Masters – 1 day meet plus setup/teardown
- April – OYO – 1 day meet plus setup/teardown
- April – Special Olympics Regional Qualifier – 1 day meet plus setup/teardown
* NKB volunteers provide set up and tear down services on a volunteer basis, and we are reimbursed for providing electronics operators at the meet, in accordance with the City's policy to charge for this service.
- Meet Management Support: NKB provides meet organization, planning and management for other clubs. This year NKB has helped Teknosport, Masters and High Schools, and will help Special Olympics with their meets.
- Officiating at other Meets: NKB officials actively volunteer at many meets throughout the city and out-of-town. Just since the beginning of 2015, NKB had officials at the Nepean Masters, GO Kingfish and Canadian Easterns meets.
- Supporting the Region: A few years ago when BYST was first awarded the EOSA short course regional meet, EOSA identified very late in the short course season that the new pool in Belleville would not be ready in time for the meet. EOSA asked NKB with only six weeks’ notice if we would be able to host the meet, and we accepted without hesitation. As one of the largest clubs in Eastern Ontario, and with the support and commitment of our members, we felt it was up to us to step up so that all swimmers from clubs in Eastern Ontario who had worked so hard to achieve qualifying standards to swim at a regional meet, would in fact have a meet to swim at. EOSA knew they could rely on NKB because of our reputation of hosting well-run, quality swim meets and our demonstrated willingness help our swim community whenever possible.
- Time Trials: We offered free participation in our January Time Trial to other clubs as a goodwill gesture.
Why and how we host swim meets
- It's Not About the Money: Yes it is true that we earn money by hosting swim meets, but, plain and simple, if NKB was hosting swim meets solely for the money we would not host the types of swim meets that we do. Meets that include multiple distance events, championship meets, and awarding medals (not only ribbons) have higher associated costs, and generate less revenue per swim overall (since offering more shorter swims can earn more revenue than offering fewer longer swims over the same period of time).
- NKB offers Qualifying Events: NKB's meets are designed to offer as many qualifying events as possible for all swimmers. This includes distance events. Using Welcome to Long Course as an example, the Friday session is an opportunity for athletes to make qualifying times. By the time we pay for pool time and other costs necessary to run this session, we don’t make any money since we offer these distance events at $8.50 per swim (which also take more time, meaning fewer swims are possible). We of course also need a full slate of volunteers to run this distance session.
- NKB offers Quality Meets: We should all be proud of how NKB approaches our hosted meets. We never focus on how to make money, but more about how to offer the events needed for the athletes in the order that will afford swimmers the best chance for many successes. For example, if two events are regional qualifiers, we try to separate them in the meet/session so the swimmer can be rested for both. We also believe we offer a quality experience at our meets with announcers, awards (we award medals, which cost more than ribbons) and presentations, and high quality hospitality.
- NKB hosts Championship Meets: NKB has a strong history of hosting Swim Ontario Championship Meets. Only Ontario swim clubs with a proven record of hosting high quality meets and who have the officials and capability (thanks to our members) to host a championship meet, are invited by Swim Ontario to place bids on which meets they would like to host for the upcoming season. Swim Ontario reviews all bids placed by swim clubs and awards the meets. The effort required to host championship meets is significant, and NKB has a reputation with swim clubs who attend our meets of always hosting well-organized, high quality meets. NKB has been honoured by being awarded one to two championship meets every year.
- For many years, it has been our pleasure to donate a portion of the money we raise through Swim-a-Thon to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO). In the last three years alone, NKB has donated more than $10,000.
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We appreciate you taking the time to read this note. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any member of the NKB Board. And if you happen to find yourself at a non-NKB meet and want to watch your child swim from on deck, ask any official – we’re sure they will find an officiating or volunteer position for you. All of the swimmers will appreciate it.