|BLIND STUDENTS LEARN TO SKATE|
MONTREAL, APRIL 18, 2007- Seventeen children and youth from the Phillip E Layton School for the Blind, part of the English Montreal School Board (EMSB), are learning how to ice skate.
The Phillip E. Layton School is based at the Montreal Association for the Blind campus in N.D.G.. This skating initiative, called Stride to Succeed, was inspired by 23 year old Côte Saint-Luc resident Scott Berish. Last winter he went to Leh, Ladahk India. This trip was carried out under the Learn Respect Fun initiative of the Montreal Canadiens, headed up by former Montreal Alouette Ron Perowne with the goal of starting up ice hockey in India. Upon his return, along with friends Nathaniel Devine and Jesse Shea, he approached Phillip E.Layton School Principal Jacques Monfette and proposed to bring skating and elements of hockey to his visually impaired and multi-challenged students.
Students from St. George's School of Montreal's leadership program are also involved with the project, as well as teacher Cameron Folkerson and Perowne's daughter Lisa. Ice time was donated by the Samuel Moskovitch Arena and the City of Côte.Saint-Luc. Equipment was provided on loan, through the Hockey Company and the Montreal Canadiens. Other costs were covered by an exceptional private donors, Brian and Claudia Cytrynbaum. The Montreal couple, who own a number of businesses, were approached by Berish for support. He gives skating lessons to one of their children.
There is only one session left this year: April 1 26. Everyone departs the MAB by carpool by 9 a.m, gets to the arena and stays on the ice until 10:50 a.m. They then have lunch inside the arena and return to the school by 12:30 p.m..
Michael J. Cohen