Posted by: ownthepodium | February 23, 2010

Support for Own the Podium

I would like thank all the people who took the time to drop me little notes of encouragement and express their support for Own the Podium.  These kind words have trickled in from coast to coast to coast, and I am thrilled our initiative has reached all the corners of this country.

I would like to share the varied emails we have received: 

“Own the Podium is a project, I as a Canadian, feel is money well spent…when in the history of the Olympics has so much national pride been generated. This pride is the result of a sports program that is finally properly funded. Viva Vancouver !!!”

 “Hi Roger, et al…..Those who are critical of our pursuit of excellence in sport, have forgotten that as Canadians we applaud excellence in whatever fields we enter: Julie Payette, several superb violinists, Glen Gould, Donald Sutherland, Terry Fox, Greg Joy, Sandra Schmirler…the list is endless.   In every case, it is the pursuit, the intense preparation, the personal satisfaction of knowing that each person did everything possible within the parameters of the game.”

“It has been part of the pride in watching this Olympics to know that our athletes were as well prepared as they had ever been (in comparison to past years’ performances to other countries) and they were challenging themselves!!”

“Canada has a population of 33,311,389.  USA Has a Population of 304,059,724.  That means we have more Champions per the ratio of the two countries….They have over 270 million than we do, Per person we have way more metals!  I am proud of the Canadian athletes, VANOC, IOC, the City of Vancouver and Canada. This has been the most exciting Olympics that I ever remember.

“Your program has inspired many.  I firmly believe that the key to success is a vision of the end in mind, to set a goal and work towards that goal.  You have set that vision for our athletes and they have gone above and beyond meeting them.  We are only one less gold than the US.  We have over 25 top five finishes.  We are no longer the only host nation not to win gold.  Your program has united a Country beyond even the ‘72 Russia series.  I cannot recall when English Canada, French Canada, Native Canada have said we are proud to be Canadian.  The success of the own the podium campaign is more than mere medals, it is the dreams being realized, it is the pride in a great Country.  This Canadian citizen thanks you for your efforts.”

“I would like our athletes to know that we are behind them. We appreciate their hard work in training and the fact that they have spent so much time, money and effort in representing our country. They deserve our thanks and kudos. They do not deserve to be told that they have not done enough, that they are disappointing us or any of the other negative things that we have heard.  I firmly believe that we need to continue this support…we need to have more crowds at all their events to let them know that we support them and they are not thrown by having a phalanx of cheering fans. We need to have more than hockey in our newspapers. This is the way that we as a country can help our athletes that moves beyond money.”

“I have always believed that athletes should be encouraged and supported. Especially our Canadian brand of athlete. The kind of athlete that contributes to the leadership gene we all need more of. Good natured. Open. Focused. Strategic. Effective. In the moment. Pick yourself up and keep going. Reflective. Competitive by being internally driven, not ego driven…Winning a medal is a great achievement. But so is being among the top 10 or top 20 in the world. Especially in elite sports where a matter of a few seconds or a fraction of a mark is the only difference between having your name listed, or your name highlighted. On a particular day. Whether you fall or not. Or if you’ve experienced a personal tragedy just hours or days before.

You’ve contributed to excellence in sportsmanship and personal leadership in a very Canadian way. And whether some people are motivated by medals, I am inspired by a personal drive to excel, to do one’s best, by the fact that the real competition is with oneself, all of it achieved by personal discipline, vison, drive and support/community (love and resources).  These athletes stand on the shoulders of giants who didn’t receive the funding but did it anyways. And it’s obvious how much we’ve loved them and been inspired by them. Their words, their reflections, are inspiring in equal measure to their achievements be it first place or twenty-fifth.”

 Again, thank you for your inspirational comments.  They touch on a wide range of issues, but clearly Canadians believe Own the Podium provides necessary support to our wonderful Canadian athletes.



  1. This can be a nationwide program in every school, every person in Canada can start to own their own podium.

    We can start next week to make this a call to action for the health of everyone in our country.

    I congratulate everyone for their efforts in the 2010 Olympics, a spectacular display..!

  2. I agree entirely, Dave M.

    I personally would donate $21.10 for each member of our family (5 of us plus grand daughter makes 6), and having heard that some corporations might withdraw, means we people could perhaps take up the slack.

    To withdraw after 5 years, is really short-sighted on the part of the Corporations. I hope it’s only a rumour.

    with kind regards

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