Hockey adapted for the help to realize his dream

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So that her son could realize his dream to play hockey, a father of a family established at Quebec the first hockey team, suitable for young people living with an intellectual disability. Today, Antoine lives more than for his favorite sport.

The young Antoine Jenniss has always been a maniac of hockey. In summer as in winter, his parents had always had difficulty removing his precious stick of hands.

But because of his acidemia methylmalonic, an orphan disease that causes particularly severe problems of vision in addition to a mild intellectual disability, the athlete of 12 years had never been able to play in an organized league.

“It would be too fast for him, he doesn’t do it,” says his father Gaston Jenniss. “But Antoine, it was the dream of his life to be part of a real team,” added her mother, Gabrielle Tousignant.

The family, with the help of the body Adaptavie, has therefore decided to set up his own structure of hockey suitable, a first in Quebec for young people living with a disability or a disorder on the autism spectrum.

Gaston Jenniss and his son Antoine, 12 years old, now spend all their Sunday morning at the arena Mark Simoneau to play hockey with five other children with mild impairments. In the training, the young man wears the colours of the Montreal canadiens.

Pleasure and evolution

Every Sunday morning for a year, Antoine and his five teammates tread on the ice of the rink, Marc-Simoneau for a workout that is led by Gaston Jenniss.

“The parents are on the ice, so they are not too anxious. It brings the little brothers, the cousins, and we have fun. It is really there to improve their skills, and not in a competitive spirit, ” said Mr. Jenniss.

For Antoine, who this year received the title of the member Adaptavie of the year for its sporty dynamism, this little 40 minutes on the ice is the highlight of his week every time. “When the weekend comes, it is yeah ! “says with a smile to the young boy when asked how he found the experience.

And his parents have seen an evolution in his personality since his early days on the ice. “It is a positive thing. For example, over the past year, he has learned that he must manage his emotions when he plays and it’s going much better, ” her mother explains. “Hockey, like any other sport, it comes with a learning of values and we are happy to be able to offer this to the children,” she adds.

Find players

The next step for Gaston Jenniss is to swell the ranks of his team, a task not self-evident, is the director of Adaptavie.

“It is difficult to reach young people because they do not always require professional services or are not in specialized classes. So they are a little lost in the shuffle and are difficult to recruit, ” explains Mario Légaré.

However, the latter is convinced that this new activity has the potential to develop. “We aim to develop as it was at the start in Montreal, with a pool of 15, 20, 30 young people, and perhaps a second team “, said Mr. Legare, saluting the exemplary involvement of the family Jenniss in the project.