Provincial Awards

Award Categories

Select from the dropdown menu below to learn about the award categories.

BCRPA offers awards in the following award categories:

BCRPA Provincial Awards of Excellence

BC Recreation and Parks Association is pleased to recognize outstanding programs, facilities, and parks whose ideas, innovation, and services make an impact in the recreation and parks sector.

Categories include:

  • Facility Excellence
    • for projects under $1 million in capital costs 
    • for projects over $1 million in capital costs
  • Parks Excellence
  • Program Excellence
    • in communities under 15,000 population
    • in communites over 15,000 population

 Facility Excellence Award

The Facility Excellence Award recognizes outstanding facility design or redesign that reflects community culture. The facility spaces are accessible to all patrons, engage community members in design consultation, and ultimately improve the well-being of the community.

Nominations for this award with capital costs less than and greater than $1,000,000 ($1M) are submitted and reviewed separately.

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Nominator or Applicant must be a BCRPA member.
  2. Nominee (the Facility) must be owned and operated by a currently enrolled Local Government, Affiliate, or Corporate Member.
  3. Whether renovated, refit, or new, the facility must be open for a minimum of one year following the launch.
  4. The facility can either be outdoor or indoor, but must be a physical structure.

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.

Parks Excellence Award

The Parks Excellence Award recognizes outstanding design and development of park spaces using natural elements or repurposing materials. The park space reflects innovative community culture, which is accessible to all patrons, and encourages individuals and communities to get out into nature. The park positively impacts the well-being of the community and the recreation and parks sector.

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Nominator or Applicant must be a BCRPA member.
  2. Nominee (the Park) must be owned and operated by a currently enrolled Local Government, Affiliate, or Corporate Member.
  3. The park must have been in existence for a minimum of one year.

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.

Program Excellence Award

The Program Excellence award recognizes innovative programs that were successful in improving individual and community-level social and physical well-being. The program could serve as a model for other local governments or organizations to enhance their services.

Nominations for this award from communities with a population of less than and greater than 15,000 are submitted and reviewed separately.

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Nominator or Applicant must be a BCRPA member.
  2. Nominee (the Program) must have been developed and administered by a currently enrolled Local Government, Affiliate, or Corporate Member.

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.

Award of Merit

BCRPA’s provincial Award of Merit provides recognition of an employee or elected official of a local government for their distinguished contributions and achievements in public recreation and parks. The award recipient has demonstrated acumen in strategic partnerships, forward and strategic thinking, and has designed a sustainable program or model to advance recreation and parks. Contributions and achievements of the nominee align with BCRPA’s purpose: to lead the enrichment of individuals and their communities through the power of recreation and parks.

This award is bestowed sparingly, due to the exceptional nature of the requirements.

The number of awards offered in any given year will be at the discretion of the Awards Committee, based on the strength of the nominations received. The Awards Committee further reserves the right not to make an award in any given year.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Nominee must be from a BCRPA enrolled local government but need not be a member (e.g. Mayor, Council, Planner, CAO, etc).
  • Nominator must be a BCRPA Member

 Selection Guidelines:

  • Sustained and meritorious effort over many years in the enhancement of local recreation and parks.
  • Significant contribution to a broad range of recreation and parks services in a Community, Region or Special Interest Area.
  • Promotion of recreation and parks among consumers of recreation services in the nominee’s service area.
  • Initiation of a service or a method which is being widely utilized by other recreation and parks agencies at the municipal, regional, and/or special interest area level.

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.

Community Leadership

BCRPA’s Community Leadership Award recognizes an outstanding leader or organization that through their unique strengths and styles, effectively act and lead others working to build a healthier more vibrant community. The nominee responds to community needs by developing a vision for change that reflects shared values in the community and champions the power of recreation and parks.

This is an annual award. The nominee is not required to be a BCRPA member; the nominator must be a BCRPA member or a BCRPA enrolled local government member.

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Nominee is an individuals or group in recreation and parks leadership from local government or the community at large (volunteers, business, agencies).
  2. Nominator must be a BCRPA Member.

Selection Guidelines:

  • Provides innovative services or approaches to community challenges that elevate the value of recreation and parks services in their community.
  • Develops and maintains coalitions that have resulted in community health benefits with key partners in the community.
  • Develops sustainable partnerships that will allow for ongoing provision of innovative services.
  • Builds on the physical, social, environmental and economic assets of the community to develop health and well-being.
  • Demonstrated ability to support creativity and innovation among a team or group to overcome barriers. Open to ideas and changing the course as guided by others.
  • A big picture thinker who is forward thinking which is important to affect lasting social change

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.

BCRPA Honorary Life Member

Honorary Life Memberships are a special distinction conferred by BCRPA's Board of Directors upon Members who have made outstanding contributions to the recreation and parks sector.

Honorary Life membership is a meaningful recognition bestowed sparingly and only to those BCRPA Members who have made significant contributions to the BCRPA and/or the sector. The honour is awarded for the lifetime of the individual.

BCRPA’s Honorary Life Members receive:

  1. BCRPA Membership status for the lifetime of the individual
  2. An invitation to BCRPA’s Symposium

Honorary Life members are appointed on the basis of the following criteria:

  • For individual members only – whether they be practitioner, academic, volunteer or staff person
  • The nominated individual must have been a BCRPA Member but need not be a current member of BCRPA
  • Should be retired from all official posts
  • Longstanding, sustained and exceptional service and impact in the parks and recreation sector
  • Outstanding contribution that required substantial and commendable personal input

Applications are to be submitted online and are to consist of:

  • Evidence that the candidate has provided long-standing, sustained and exceptional service and impact
  • Confirmation that the candidate is retired from remunerated employment in the recreation sector
  • One letter of support from each of two nominators
  • Letter(s) of support from others who can attest to the candidate's merit for this award

Selection Procedures:

  1. Members of BCRPA may submit nominations for Honorary Life Membership in the online form, for consideration by the Board of Directors.
  2. All matters relating to a nomination are confidential with only the final decision of the Board of Directors in favour of the nomination being announced publicly.
  3. The Board will review and deliberate all nominations obtained against the Criteria.
  4. The Board of Directors will be asked to vote on a motion to award an Honorary Life Membership. It must be passed by a unanimous resolution of those present and voting.
  5. Newly-appointed Honorary Life Members will receive recognition and a certificate of their membership status at the Annual General Meeting of the BCRPA, or other function at the Annual Symposium.

The nomination period is now closed.

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Connie Mah, Administrator, by email.


CPRA Awards Program

CPRA Awards Program 2021

Cpra WebThe CPRA Awards Program provides an opportunity to showcase the parks and recreation sector on a national scale.

This Program raises the awareness and profile of CPRA in the provinces and territories; while at the same time recognizes the connection between the local parks and recreation professionals / practitioners to the national work being undertaken by CPRA. The CPRA Awards Program celebrates those collective and collaborative efforts.

Categories include:

  • CPRA Award of Merit
  • CPRA President's Award of Distinction
  • CPRA Partnership Award
  • CPRA Emerging Leader Award

Nominators must be Members of CPRA. Nominees are not required to be members of CPRA P/T member organizations. For more information on the CPRA Awards Program, please contact


Current Award Recipients

Congratulations to the 2021 Award of Excellence Recipients!

Facility Nsic Aerial

Facility Excellence - for projects over $1 million

North Surrey Sport and Ice Complex, City of Surrey

Learn about the North Surrey Sport and Ice Complex

The North Surrey Sport and Ice Complex is Surrey’s newest recreation facility, located in North Surrey’s diverse and growing community. The planning and design of the facility prioritizes sustainable transportation, and is easily accessible through multiple transit options while also offering bicycle racks to encourage residents to cycle to the venue. The 134,000 square foot facility features three ice sheets addressing the community’s identified need for ice sports: hockey, sledge hockey, and figure skating. In addition, the building features fitness facilities and amenities including a gym, spin and yoga room, and café, while the infrastructure of the ice sheets provides venues for lacrosse, basketball, and trade shows.

The facility was designed to be accessible to all abilities, ages, genders, and cultures and was awarded a Gold Certification Rating from the Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility (RHFAC)- a rating system that evaluates the accessibility of commercial, institutional, and multi-unit residential buildings and sites. The design of the complex also reflects local indigenous culture by featuring First Nation public art that symbolizes reconciliation and hope, and adapting spaces to support other art mediums such as digital art labs and ceramic studios.

 Facility Nsic Aerial

Facility Nsic Front

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Facility Nsic Rink

Facility Nsic Accessible

Facility Nsic Sledge Hockey


Jumpstart Playground Entry

Parks Excellence

Unwin Park and Jumpstart Playground, City of Surrey

Learn about Unwin Park and Jumpstart Playground

Unwin Park and Jumpstart Playground is a 12,000 square foot picturesque, inclusive play space developed in partnership with Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities. The playground, located within Unwin Park, is intentionally designed to be an imaginative, inclusive, and accessible space that provides children with physical, sensory, and cognitive disabilities an environment that promotes well-being and collaborative play. The park is located within easy walking distance from eight schools within the highly diverse community of Newton.

The playground at Unwin Parks truly sets the standard for playground accessibility, and includes features such as the We-Go-Round - a merry-go-round designed for wheeled mobility devices to roll directly on, and enjoy the merry-go- round experience, as well as slides with transfer benches that allow children to use the slide with their peers, and then easily transfer themselves from the slide to their mobility device. Other creative play elements include sails, flags, and canopies to encourage creative play as well as platforms and ramps with nooks and crannies that often generate imaginative play activities. Areas of shade are also provided within and around the playground so children can stay cool as they play.

Ongoing communication and collaboration with park users and community members has been essential to the playground’s success. These connections helped build excitement and anticipation for the park, which has resulted in increased popularity with a broad cross-section of the local community, as well as with residents from the entire City of Surrey as a destination and multi-generational family experience.

 Jumpstart Playground Entry

Jumpstart Playground

Unwin Playground 2

Unwin Playground 1 Unwin Playground 5
Rhapsody Collection Drums And Chimes  

Feed The Need West Vancouver 1

Program Excellence (for populations over 15,000)

Feed the Need, District of West Vancouver

Learn about Feed the Need

Feed the Need is a volunteer-driven program that provides nutritious meals to vulnerable seniors in West Vancouver. The program operates out of the community’s Seniors’ Activity Centre (SAC) and began in March 2020 after the COVID-19 pandemic uncovered chronic food security issues for vulnerable citizens who lacked the means to access regular meals. To identify each individual at-risk citizen, volunteers conducted wellness assessments by placing phone calls to over 6,700 seniors in the community.

Feed the Need now delivers three meals a week to 366 vulnerable seniors living in low-income subsidized housing in West Vancouver. At the end of 2020, the program had delivered more than 26,000 free meals. Feed the Need recently raised over $400,000 in donations to support an additional 20 months of meals, allowing volunteers to fulfill their intention to continue the program for the duration of the pandemic, and beyond.

 Feed The Need West Vancouver 1

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Program Excellence Honorary Mentions

District of Saanich for HeArts Together Community Art Project

HeArts Together is a collaborative community art project that responds to the COVID-19 pandemic by inviting community members to come together creatively while remaining close to home. Participants created unique clay and painted wooden hearts and messages that are assembled together with hearts made by children and other community members in outdoor displays in Saanich parks and public places. HeArts Together supports isolated and vulnerable community members to actively participate in the project through collaboration with community partners, including health care facilities and service organizations.

Runner Up Richmond Painting

Runner Up Richmond Open Your Heart

City of New Westminster for Remembrance Day Re-imagined

Remembrance Day Re-imagined was created to find a safe way for citizens of New Westminster to honor their veterans in an accessible, inclusive, and meaningful way while respecting COVID-19 regulations. The highly creative program was conceived of in partnership with 8 community organizations and led by the New Westminster Royal Canadian Legion and the Royal Westminster Regiment. The dynamic service was presented as a live-stream video through Zoom, local television and on social media, with a phone-in option for those without internet and a recorded version made available to anyone after the event.

Remembrance Day Service Remembrance Day Student Artwork

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Community Leadership

Richmond Food Security Society

Learn about Richmond Food Security Society

The Richmond Food Security Society is a non-profit organization based in the city of Richmond that has focused on creating a robust local Food Security System through education, advocacy and community-building initiatives since 2010. Under the vision of ‘healthy people, community and environment,’ the Society empowers people through workshops, events, and programs with the skills to engage more fully in their local food system. The Society does this primarily through five ongoing community programs: community gardens, a seed library, fruit tree recovery, youth food security leaders, and teaching children how to garden.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Society has been able to stay active and safely engage over 950 users in their community garden program which includes 450 community garden plots across 13 sites, 500 users in the seed library program, and 900 school children in their Get-Rooted and Kids in the Garden programs – all with the assistance of over 50 volunteers from young people to seniors. They also created an innovative meal program in direct response to local food insecurity created by the pandemic, repurposing over 4000 pounds of food donated by the Richmond Food Bank and other organizations into ready-made meals. Since May 2020 they have provided 500 meals each week to at risk community members across Richmond.

Rfss Meal Prep Program 1

Rfss Riverport Community Garden Build Day

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Rfss Meal Prep Program 2

Rfss Cook Community Garden 1




Past Award Recipients

2020 Award Recipients

Parks Excellence - District of Peachland, Ray Kandola Heritage Pier

2020 Parks Excellence Award

Peachland Ray Kandola Heritage Pier Accessible 1

Ray Kandola Heritage Pier is a 120 metre, wheelchair accessible, multi-use pier that runs parallel to Peachland’s downtown public waterfront. The innovative design and development of this open space, bordering the community’s central hub, Heritage Park, has removed long standing challenges to accessing the 13 kilometers of Peachland’s steep public waterfront along Okanagan Lake. The Pier now serves to enhance community culture by providing locals and visitors alike an accessible destination to enjoy a variety of activities and community events.

The project design, spearheaded by three local community groups – Peachland Sportsmen’s Association, Peachland Lions Club and Peachland Rotary Club, also involved planting new trees and shoreline restoration using native plant species, which has been a goal of the District since the community was impacted by large flooding in 2017.

The Pier now supports and promotes an active, integrated lifestyle, welcoming community members to walk, fish, socialize and interface with nature along the waterfront as the new hub of Peachland. With tourism as the main industry within the District, the Pier now supports new programs to thrive, such as providing free fishing rods to visitors through the Peachland Visitors Centre, providing unique and memorable recreation experiences for tourists and locals alike.

Peachland Ray Kandola Heritage Pier Spring 1

Facility Excellence (for projects over $1M) - Township of Langley, Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre

2020 Facility Excellence Award (for projects over $1 million)

Langley Aldergrovecommctr Outside Playground 1

The Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre (ACUCC) facility was created with the goal of supporting the inclusion of all genders, ages, and cultures within Langley’s 125,000+ residents, bringing four key recreation components together in one central location: an arena, community spaces, aquatics waterpark, and a playground. The establishment of the modern, energy efficient ACUCC in its central downtown location not only allows it to be accessible by multiple forms of transportation (walking, cycling, transit and driving), but it supports the overall revitalization of business activity in the Township’s core.

The design of the ACUCC utilizes reclaimed brick and beams from an old school, showcasing a historical reference within its structure. The facility also includes an important energy conservation focus, with waste heat from the high efficiency refrigeration being utilized through the pool’s water heating system. In addition to the solar thermal system, LED lighting and water harvesting recovery system, the facility also provides electric vehicle charging stations.

Langley Aldergrovecommctr Arena 1

Langley Aldergrovecommctr Waterpark 1

Facility Excellence (for projects under $1M) - City of Richmond, Edwardian Cottage

2020 Facility Excellence Award (for projects under $1 million)

Richmond Edwardian Cottage Exterior Collage

The Edwardian Cottage is an iconic 1920s heritage building, located in Terra Nova, one of Richmond’s oldest settlement areas on the northwest corner of Lulu Island. Settled first by the Musqueam First Nation, then later by European settlers, the Edwardian Cottage is a remnant of the Terra Nova Cannery which was operated by BC Packers, and embodies the early settlement pattern related to the region’s important fishing industry.

In 2014, after a comprehensive planning, design and stakeholder engagement process, the Edwardian Cottage was rehabilitated, restored, and retrofit with a wheelchair ramp, becoming the new home of the Terra Nova Nature School for children from preschool to 13 years old. The facility’s design emphasizes conservation, optimizing building performance, continued improvement in energy use, water efficiency, and a high indoor environmental quality.

The establishment of the Terra Nova Nature School has supported both the nature goals and the physical activity goals of the City of Richmond and addressed a number of community needs, including a licensed preschool program that would allow parents to apply for subsidies through the Ministry of Child and Family Development. The Nature School also supports the community-identified need for more early childhood learning opportunities, and to connect young people to nature in order to develop lifelong ecological literacy and stewardship. Community members from diverse backgrounds, abilities and ethnicities now come together to participate in this non-traditional educational program, based in traditional educative methods.

Richmond Edwardian Cottage Interior Collage

Program Excellence (pop. over 15k) - City of Surrey, Sensory Friendly Spaces

2020 Program Excellence Award (for population over 15k)

Surrey Sensory Friendly Space

The City of Surrey has one of the highest rates of Autism in British Columbia. To address this, and guided by the City’s principle of inclusion, Surrey partnered with the Canucks Autism Network (CAN) to create and promote several sensory-friendly options for people living with autism spectrum disorder or who have sensory processing needs.

The Sensory Friendly Spaces program aims to ensure people living with Autism feel welcome at City events and facilities. A sensory friendly space is a calm and quiet area designed to create a supportive environment for individuals who have autism spectrum disorder, anxiety or other sensory-processing needs. The sensory friendly space allows individuals to feel safe and calm, allowing them to not only attend events but also feel supported throughout the event.

In an effort to make the City the most accessible city in Canada, recreation centres across Surrey also have adopted sensory friendly kits to support patrons. The kits contain noise-cancelling headphones, sensory toys, and fidget toys and can be borrowed from the reception desk in each centre. These low-cost kits are incorporated into recreation centre budgets to make this project sustainable in the long term. The program also integrates training for front line staff on how to use these kits with patrons. The City has also developed kits in partnership with the Surrey Fire Department to support Fire Fighters in emergency situations to help people with autism and other sensory processing needs.

Surrey Sensory Friendly Space Room

Program Excellence (pop. under 15k) - City of Nelson, Nelson and District Youth Centre Program

2020 Program Excellence Award (for population under15k)

Nelson Youth Programs Camps

The Nelson and District Youth Centre program is a social enterprise developed to empower children, youth, and families through connection, education, and recreation in a safe, fun, and creative environment. The program offers barrier-free programming, allowing anyone to enter the Centre to participate in programs at little or no cost. The Centre’s facilities include an indoor all-wheels park, a bouldering cove, multi-sporting court, dance studio, art and band rooms, kitchen, and a new Makerspace - all designed to increase physical literacy and social well-being.

Programming at the Centre is always evolving to meet the changing needs of the community. Current programming includes flexible and affordable childcare, technology programs focused on digital arts, electronics, doding and robotics that aim to support youth to develop confidence and new skills to assist them when entering the workforce, a ‘Books Everywhere’ mini-library literacy program, the Eazy-Eats introduction to cooking skills program, and a community mural.

Nelson Youth Programs Mural Painting

Community Leadership - City of Burnaby, Warming Centre Team

2020 Community Leadership Award

Warming Centre Interior Shot 1

The Warming Centre Team supports each of Burnaby’s three warming centre locations, which are operated by the City of Burnaby’s Parks Department. Team members act as important points of contact within the community, and work closely with a wide variety of internal and external agencies to act quickly and positively to ensure the community’s most vulnerable people are looked after during the winter months.

Each day, Warming Centre Team members address a wide range of complex social and health issues, including mental health, addiction, housing and homelessness, medical health concerns, hunger, and overall life preservation. Along with basic shelter for the night, Burnaby's warming centres provide washroom facilities, mats, tables and chairs, hot beverages and snacks, and space for people's belongings. Last year the Warming Centre Team provided shelter for more than 2,500 visitors, connecting them with agencies that can help them access the services they need.

Warming Centre Exterior Signage

2019 Award Recipients

2019 Provincial Award Recipients

Parks Excellence Award - City of Surrey, Forsyth Park

2019 Parks Excellence Award

Forsyth Park is a new, 7.5 acre neighbourhood park that has transformed a previously used, unsafe, and heavily littered area into a destination nature-inspired playground. The park also includes an off-leash dog area, picnic areas, pathways and trails and now acts as a connector among two schools, cycling and walking routes, and to the future City Greenway. Phase two for the project will include a sports field/courts, parking lot and washrooms.

The design for Forsyth Park emerged out of substantial community consultation which included public open houses and surveys. This process assisted in the development of a list of community needs, all of which were included in the final design of Forsyth Park with the goal of creating a park that could cater to all facets of the surrounding community.

To ensure all mobility levels and ages were able to use the park, each pathway is accessible by wheelchair and walker users, skateboarders, bicyclists, children on tricycles, pedestrians and joggers. Accessible play equipment, picnic tables, and bench pads were also included. All primary pathways are wide and paved, including a ramped pathway up to the playground hill.

Forsyth Park has been developed in an area where household incomes are lower than other parts of Surrey, and fills a much needed gap, providing active living and outdoor spaces where community members can gather and socialize.

“We are honored to award the City of Surrey the BCRPA Parks Excellence Award for their work on the Forsyth Park project,” said Rebecca Tunnacliffe, CEO of the BC Recreation and Parks Association. “This project has taken a previously unsafe and unused parcel of land and transformed it, with the guidance of its citizens, into a vibrant community hub that facilitates an active lifestyle and connection to others and to nature.”

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Left: Grand Opening of Forsyth Park


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Left: Off-leash dog area at Forsyth Park


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Left: Nature play area at Forsyth Park for kids of all abilities


Facility Excellence Award - City of Trail, Trail Riverfront Centre

2019 Facility Excellence Award

The new 15,000 square foot Trail Riverfront Centre serves as the home of Trail’s cultural, literacy and heritage services, including the Trail & District Public Library and Trail Museum & Archives. Since opening in April of last year, the accessible facility has welcomed over 78,000 visitors, patrons and members through its doors, far exceeding all forecasted expectations. The integrated concept allows patrons to flow freely between library and museum spaces, welcoming everyone from young families to seniors. The increase in patrons has also seen a new cohort of youth who are enthusiastically utilizing the Centre to supplement their education needs.

The Trail Riverfront Centre is centrally located and designed purposefully to reflect the continued impact industry plays in sustaining the quality of life in the region. Exhibits inside the facility tell the socio-cultural history of the community, with particular emphasis on the role sport has played as the social fiber of the community and in raising the profile of Trail on the international scale.

“It is our pleasure to present Trail with this Facility Excellence Award for the Trail Riverfront Centre. This project clearly reflects outstanding design and cutting-edge innovation that provides the citizens of this remarkable small interior town an integrated recreation, historical and cultural experience,” said Rebecca Tunnacliffe, CEO of the BC Recreation and Parks Association.

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Left: Trail Riverfront Centre, home to the Trail & District Public Library, the Trail Museum & Archives and the
Trail Visitor Centre.

 Facility Trail Stairwell Teckwall



Left: Stairwell of the Trail Museum & Archives, showcasing the region's history

Program Excellence Award (pop. over 15k) - City of Surrey, MYzone Drop-in Afterschool Program

2019 Program Excellence Award

for populations over 15,000

The MYzone Drop-in Afterschool Program provides school-aged children accessible, affordable, and high quality afterschool programming between the hours of 3:00pm – 6:00pm when productive engagement is necessary to optimize developmental learning. The design of the program is based on extensive national and international research that identified the highest-impact evidence-based components to incorporate into the program and its curriculum.

MYzone addresses the need for quality afterschool programs in the second largest municipality in BC with the largest cohort of school age children in the province. The program’s design seeks to mitigate other key factors that can create barriers to a child’s positive development such as the absence of appropriate supports to new immigrant and refugee families, inaccessible child care, lower income, and transportation accessibility.

In response, the program embraces a universal approach to access and offers a convenient drop-in, sliding-scale, low-to-no fee format, allowing children open access and providing greater flexibility to families. The program strikes a balance between structured and unstructured activities providing active play and recreation, homework support, social-emotional skill development, leadership building, and peer and staff relationship development.

With its great success, and continued and growing support from stakeholders and community partners, the program has now expanded to 20 locations in Surrey with two more sites slated to be launched in the fall.

“The MYzone Drop-in Afterschool Program is a highly deserving recipient of the Program Excellence Award for the critical role it plays in providing an innovative, accessible, and flexible program to support the developmental needs of school-aged children and their families in Surrey,” said Rebecca Tunnacliffe, CEO of the BC Recreation and Parks Association.

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Program Surrey Myzone 2


Program Surrey Myzone 3  

Program Excellence Award (pop. under 15k) - City of Kitimat, Mini Mud and Mud Games

2019 Program Excellence Award

for populations under 15,000

The Kitimat Mini Mud and Mud Games are team-focused recreational events open to all ages, providing active participation to both children and adults. The fun-filled Mud Games competition includes an eight kilometer course made up of 31 obstacles, utilizing as much of the natural environment as possible. A continuous shuttle service is provided to rotate spectators along the course so they may watch friends and family make their way through the obstacles. The course is designed by a local resident on his personal property, and constructed by multiple sponsors specifically to challenge participants mentally and physically.

The Mud Games began as a partnership between the District of Kitimat, the local Chamber of Commerce and a local business owner to bring together the community and invite participants from around the region to take part in a fun, entertaining, and team-building competition. The weekend originally included one event for participants aged 12 and over, but was met with so much enthusiasm from children under 12 years old, the event organizers designed a smaller, more manageable course for children, called the Mini Mud Games.

The mandate of the District of Kitimat’s Leisure Services is to promote a healthy lifestyle both physically and mentally within the community while encouraging the development of sportsmanship, leadership, skills and development, self-esteem, enjoyment, and creativity within the recreation community. The Kitimat Mini Mud and Mud Games were designed to reflect and support this mandate.

“It is our pleasure to present the City of Kitimat with this Program Excellence award for Kitimat Mini Mud and Mud Games. This program engages community members of all ages in a unique, homegrown outdoor recreation program that while offering up a physical and mental challenge for participants, also provides an opportunity for deeper engagement and community connection for all,” said Rebecca Tunnacliffe, CEO of the BC Recreation and Parks Association.

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Programs Kitimat Mini Mud 159

 Programs Kitimat Mud Games 341

Programs Kitimat Mud Games 411

2019 Youth Aquatics Leadership Award

Annika Dixon-Reusz

2019 Youth Aquatics Leadership Award Recipient

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Annika Dixon-Reusz, from the City of Rossland, receives the inaugural 2019 Youth Aquatics Leadership Award from Doug Perks.

The BCRPA DB Perks Provincial Aquatics Youth Award acknowledges the outstanding achievements of an emerging leader in the early stages of their aquatics career. This new award offered for the first time this year, recognizes youth with the traits and skills required to hold a leadership position in aquatics, and who shows promise in continuing to make an impact on the sector.

Past Award Recipients (2005-2018)

Past Provincial Award Recipients (2005-2018)


Parks Excellence Award

  • City of Trail, Columbia River Skywalk

The Columbia River Skywalk project specifically addressed issues related to Trail's walkability and connectivity as the West and East communities are separated by the mighty Columbia River. Prior to this project, the only other means to cross the river was via the main traffic bridge's walkway, which was noted as feeling unsafe by pedestrians. The connection to other urban trail systems, the installation of onramps, and the grade and width of the bridge have ensured 100% accessibility to users of all abilities.

Facility Excellence Award for projects over $1 million

  • City of Richmond, City Centre Community Centre

The City Centre Community Centre is a vibrant two-storey facility located within a mixed-use development. The LEED Gold community centre offers modern, multi-purpose spaces for a range of community recreation programs and services that are tailored to residents of all ages and abilities. The community centre also features an art studio, music rooms, social room, community living room and fitness centre.

 Facility Excellence Award for projects under $1 million

  • City of Taylor, Community Services Hub

The Community Services Hub was built with inclusivity in mind, with full wheelchair access, including wheelchair accessible doors, counter, conference table, and washroom implements. It also hosts the monthly meetings of the Taylor Access and Inclusion Committee, whose aim is to improve accessibility and inclusivity for the community. The Community Services Hub provides a clear point-of-contact to community groups and organizations that allows for the creation and building of important relationships as the community moves forward together.

Program Excellence Award for populations over 15,000

  • City of Richmond, Pollinator Pasture

Pollinator Pasture is the artistic creation of a large-scale landscape and community-engaged public art project by the City of Richmond in partnership with Border Free Bees, an ambitious, creative and successful long-term pollinator-focused public art initiative headed by Dr. Cameron Cartiere, Associate Professor at Emily Carr University of Art + Design (ECUAD). The 2.6 acre Pollinator Pasture, itself, is located at the Bridgeport Industrial Park and planted in the pattern of a bee's wings with native and naturalized seed beneficial to a broad range of pollinators. The Pollinator Pasture and supportive free programming raises awareness of the plight of wild pollinators, particularly bees, and empowers communities to actively engage in solutions for habitat loss. The initiative also transforms underutilized urban sites into aesthetically pleasing and scientifically viable pollinator pastures. The Pollinator Pasture exemplifies how harnessing the power of artistic practices can inspire community action, engagement and stewardship of pollinators in British Columbia.

Program Excellence Award for populations under 15,000

  • City of Kitimat, i-Can Program

The District of Kitimat, Leisure Services takes great pride in connecting the citizens of the community with opportunities to engage in a healthy, active lifestyle. The I-Can program was started when a gap in service was identified by a number of parents who have special needs children in the community. A unique partnership was formed between Kitimat Parents for Kids with Disabilities, Kitimat Community Development Centre and the Kitimat Leisure Services Department. The programs are designed to be inclusive with peers, while offering a unique, physically challenging level of participation that the child can achieve success in while still have fun (based on FLOW theory – finding the appropriate balance of challenge and skill in an activity to make the participant successful).

Award of Merit Recipients

  • Cathryn Volkering Carlile
  • Community Recreational Initiatives Society (CRIS)

CPRA National Award of Merit Recipient

  • Murray Kopp

Student Scholarships

  • Emily Beaudoin, University of Victoria
  • Korine Hawksby, Langara College, Bachelor Degree Program
  • Sandip Gill, Langara College, Diploma Program


Facility Excellence for projects over $1 million

  • City of Surrey, Grandview Heights Aquatic Centre

Facility Excellence for projects under $1 million

  • City of West Kelowna, Memorial Park Amphitheater and Skateboard Park

Program Excellence

  • West Shore Parks and Recreation, Wild About Wellness

Parks Excellence for projects over $1 million

  • City of Richmond, Terra Nova Adventure Play Environment

Student Scholarship Recipients

  • Amy Cornish, Langara College, Diploma Program
  • Lauren King, University of Victoria
  • Britta Peterson, Vancouver Island University
  • Rachel Venner, Langara College, Bachelor Degree Program


Facility Excellence

  • City of Castlegar, Millennium Park Natural Swimming Ponds

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • City of New Westminster, Saint Mary's Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • City of Kelowna, Strong Neighbourhoods Program

Program Excellence for municipalities with populations of less than 15,000

  • Resort Municipality of Whistler, Whistler Presents

Program Excellence for municipalities with populations of over 15,000 

  • District of West Vancouver, Keeping Connected

President's Award

  • Dean Gibson

Honorary Life Membership Award

  • Brian Johnston

Student Scholarship Recipients

  • Erin Henneberry, University of Victoria
  • Alexandra Lukac, Simon Fraser University
  • Rebecca Stephen, Langar College/University


Facility Excellence

  • City of Burnaby, Edmonds Community Centre and Fred Randall Pool

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • Regional District of Central Okanagan, Gellatly Nut Farm Regional Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • District of West Vancouver, North Shore QSA Symposium and Network Events Program

Program Excellence

  • Active Communities Group, Active Communities Learn to Skate Program
  • City of Surrey, The Re-enactors: Surrey's True Stories, Heritage Program

Friend of the Sector

  • Doug Perks

President's Award

  • Louise Roberts

Student Scholarships

  • Hiroko Shinozaki, Langara College
  • Sarena Jonah, Langara College
  • Ashleigh Hawes, University of Victoria


Facility Excellence

  • City of Langford, City Centre Park
  • Regional District of Central Kooteny, Crestion and District Community Complex

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • City of New Westminster, Westminster Pier Park
  • City of Prince George, Duchess Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • District of West Vancouver, Parks and Community Services Division, District of West Vancouver

Program Excellence

  • City of New Westminster, Heart 2 Art Program
  • Corporation of the District of Saanich Parks and Recreation, Education Children Outside (ECO) Nature Preschool
  • Saanich Commonwealth Place, District of Saanich, Moving Forward

Friend of the Sector

  • BC Healthy Living Alliance (BCHLA)

CPRA Award of Merit

  • Chris Nelson

Student Scholarships

  • Blake Mansbridge, University of Victoria
  • Shelly Schnee, Langara College
  • Shannon Bence, Vancouver Island University


Facility Excellence

  • City of Pitt Meadows, South Bonson Community Centre

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • District of Peachland, Centennial Way-Beach Avenue Project

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • West Vancouver Community Centre Society & District of West Vancouver, Situational Analysis

Program Excellence

  • District of West Vancouver, Ambleside Adventure Playground Camp
  • DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society, Sports & Me Pilot Program

Friend of the Sector

  • Lifesaving Society - BC & Yukon

President's Award

  • Lori Gibbard

Student Scholarships

  • Nicole Barrett, University of Victoria
  • Tara Nazemi, Langara College
  • Jody Phibbls, University of Northern BC


Facility Excellence

  • City of Coquitlam, Poirier Sport & Leisure Complex
  • City of Surrey, Cloverdale Recreation Centre

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • Corporation of Delta, Rotary WaterWorks at Diefenbaker Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • City of Abbotsford, Safari Kids Zone

Program Excellence

  • City of Burnaby, Circus Program

Student Scholarships

  • Christine Creer, University of Victoria
  • Steven McGee, Simon Fraser University


Award of Merit

  • Joe Iannarelli
  • Bob Pope

Environmental Leadership

  • Township of Langley, Urban Gardens

Facility Excellence

  • District of Maple Ridge, Greg Moore Youth Recreation Centre
  • City of Courtenay, Native Sons Hall

Healthy Choices

  • North Vancouver Recreation Commission, Play Well Eat Well - Healthy Eating Project

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • District of Lake Country, Swalwell Park
  • Township of Langley, Willoughby Community Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • City of Kelowna, Everybody gets to play - Okanagan Network

Program Excellence

  • City of Kelowna, Recreation Opportunities Coupon Program
  • City of Port Moody, What Swims Beneath
  • City of Victoria, Evergreen Terrace Neighbourhood Playground Program

Student Scholarships

  • Claire Jean, University of Victoria
  • Geoff Langan, Langara College
  • Paul Sharp, University of British Columbia Okanagan
  • Dana Simpson, Kwantlen Polytechnic University


Facility Excellence

  • District of West Vancouver, West Vancouver Community Centre
  • District of Kitimat, Sam Lindsay Aquatic Centre
  • City of Kelowna, H2O

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • City of New Westminster, Step up to 12th Street
  • City of Richmond, Garden City Community Park Play Environment

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • District of Kitimat, Northern Health & District of Kitimat Protocol Agreement

Program Excellence

  • North Vancouver Recreation Commission, Health and Wellness Project for Newcomers
  • City of Surrey, MOYO - Mobile Youth Outreach


Facility Excellence

  • City of Burnaby, Mountain Air Bike Skills Park
  • City of Nanaimo & Gemelia Design Inc., Oliver Woods Community Centre
  • City of Victoria, Burnside Gorge Community Centre

Environmental Leadership

  • City of Richmond, Terra Nova Rural Park Program

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • City of Surrey, Holland Park

Program Excellence

  • Active Communities Vancouver, Red Fox Active Outreach
  • City of Richmond, Decreasing Barriers, Increasing Wellness

Active Communities Excellence

  • Teck - Trail Operations, Inspiring Wellness and Learning Committee

Student Scholarships

  • Charissa Steel, Kwanteln Polytechnic University
  • Suzanne Vander Wekken, University of Victoria


Active Communities Excellence

  • District of Kitimat, Kick It Up Kitimat
  • Canim Lake Band, Canim Lake Band Active Communities
  • District of Sparwood, Sparwood Active Communities

Facility Excellence

  • City of Surrey, South Surrey Recreation Centre
  • City of Campbell River, Campbell River Community Centre

Environmental Leadership

  • City of Abbotsford, Excellence in the Environment

HIGH FIVE Excellence

  • City of Surrey, HIGH FIVE Committment

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, The Stanley Park Storm: From Crisis to Opportunity

Program Excellence

  • North Vancouver Recreation Commission and West Vancouver Community SErvices, North Shore Walks
  • City of Surrey, Greenbrook Kids Clubhouse
  • City of Abbotsford, Diwali Sehat Mela

Student Scholarships

  • Emma Peake, Langara College
  • Leah Warwick, Langara College
  • Graeme Hall, Kwantlen University College
  • Laurel Liesel Beveridge, University of Victoria
  • Jody Lindsay Chan, University of British Columbia
  • Stephanie Walsh, College of the Rockies


Facility Excellence

  • City of North Vancouver, John Braithwaite Community Centre

Environmental Leadership

  • City of Surrey, Surrey's Environmental Extravaganza

Program Excellence

  • District of Kitimat/Kitimat Health Unit, Women's Wellness Community Project
  • City of Surrey/Surrey Art Gallery, Urban Reality
  • City of Victoria, Passport to Skating

Parks and Open Spaces Excellence

  • City of Quesnel, West Fraser Timber Park

PERC Award for Management Innovation and Ingenuity

  • Greater Victoria Inter-Municipal Recreation Managers' Committee


Facility Excellence

  • City of Burnaby, Metro Skate Park

Environmental Leadership

  • Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation and LEES + Associates, Everett Crowley Park Management Plan

Program Excellence

  • City of Surrey, REMIXX
  • Township of Esquimalt, Esquimalt Together Against Graffitti

President's Award

  • James (Jim) Marvel


Award of Merit

  • District of Oak Bay, Recreation Oak Bay

Facility Excellence

  • Regional District of Nanaimo, Oceanside Place

Program Excellence

  • The Corporation of the City of Penticton, Pentiction Steps Out