Sustiainable equipment such as hockey sticks, balls, cones and bibs help run our hockey for development programme. Our viable hockey communities provide a background for local learning, for both coaches and kids. Emphasis lies on the development of education of coaches and their personal and social skills. The coaches take on leadership roles as they organise hockey training sessions and camps for kids. So, while working on their own development, coaches become positive role models and leaders in their (Hockey Dreams) Communities. In our programme a sustainable supply of equipment is vital, as are the people who help collect it.
No hockey without equipment
Hockey equipment is essential to our programmes. We are very happy we get offered a lot! For our impact to be as sustainable as possible, we check 4 key elements before collecting and shipping equipment.
- Local market availability
We aim to promote the local economy where we can.
- Shared usability
The shipped equipment gets used everyday, all day. It means that everything needs to be usage-proof and can hold for preferably years or months, instead of days.
- Logical feasibility
Getting equipment to our communities is an operational mission.
- Storage limitations
We have limited space to store equipment – so we make thoughtful decisions based on needs, how much space is left in the storage, and how much time it takes to have space again.
What do we collect, what don’t we collect?
- Sticks, balls, cones and bibs are welcome at any time. So, yes please to all of these! They are used all the time (sticks for example rotate and might be used by ten different kids in one session) but are difficult to get locally or to get in affordable bulk.
- Large stick or goalie bags in good shape are most welcome as they are very useful for the local transport of equipment by our coaches.
- Goalie sets do not score high in terms of shared-use and logistics. The international transport is manageable but very costly. Also, the coaches are reliant on their legs, bikes and public transport, so lugging goalie sets along every session would often mean less sticks for the kids.
- Sorting out the logistics of items like shin pads and gloves can be quite difficult. New items we will consider collecting.
- We rarely collect clothing. We are offered plenty but we do not want to stand in the way of countries’ local (clothing) businesses. However, we do see that an outfit can make a camp, tournament or league extra special; therefore, we send only clothes of partners that go the extra mile. In that way, Hockey Dreams becomes their official charity and accordingly these partners raise funds for both the shipment and the actual programmes.
- We do not collect shoes considering they are available at local markets for reasonable prices. They are mostly personal items and can wear out quickly.
Collected equipment and its route
Your (reused) hockey stick will roll into our equipment programme, all the way from the collection point one of the locations where we operate our communities – where many coaches and kids (way more than there is equipment for) use it every day. Talking about circularity.
- Collection & donation. The equipment is collected at and donated by various sport stores, brands, clubs and individuals and is brought to the Hockey Dreams Headquarters or one of our collection hubs.
- Store, check & bundle up. The equipment undergoes a long journey and thus needs to be sturdy. If the durability is in order, the equipment is packed and bundled up for easy handling and custom controls. We are ready to start the overseas journey!
- Shipment to communities. The equipment is on its way to the hockey communities by plane or ship and the last miles by truck.
- Delivery and distribution. The Hockey Dreams Coaches collect the shipment and include the new arrived gear to the existing inventory. Now the equipment can be scheduled and used efficiently in their training projects.
- Ready, set, go! The coaches take the equipment with them by foot, bus or bicycle.
Building a playground
The equipment has come a long way, and can now be used for a long time by our 40 coaches. Sticks and balls are all shared by everyone. The coaches organise weekly training for more than 2000 kids and run various camps and league days throughout the year. These events create learning opportunities for our coaches, as well as for the kids and the wider community. So with the help of our friends and partners, hockey sticks and balls build a playground where the players of today, are the game changers of tomorrow.
Friends and partners
Since 2021, we have agreed on an official and sustainable partnership with the European Hockey Federation. We work closely on enabling hockey development in Europe by creating possibilities for ambitious EHF member National Associations.
Friends and partners such as FIH, GRYPHON, SportWays, Hockeygear.eu, Hockey Centre and Otter Hockey collect and donate equipment. Various clubs help out too: HC Kampong, Hockey Club Amsterdam, Hockey Club Phoenix, NMHC Nijmegen, MHC Beuningen and Royal Herakles HC have all contributed.
After collection, SkyNet in Amsterdam offers storage until equipment is packed, counted and transported to our communities. Engel Trucks B.V. and the KNHB and help us in making sure the collected equipment makes its way overseas. Without the help of our friends and partners, we would not have the equipment to build a better future through hockey.
Are you our new Equipment Manager?
Would you like to be part of our hockey family? Would you like to help build viable hockey communities? Hockey Dreams Foundation is looking for a volunteer Equipment Manager who really gets the (hockey) ball rolling.