COC Launches Groundbreaking Total Athlete Wellness Program
TORONTO — On Thursday, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC), and Deloitte launched Game Plan – a high performance athlete wellness and transition program designed to give Canadian athletes new tools to pursue excellence during and beyond their sporting careers.
The COC and Deloitte also announced the renewal of their partnership through 2032 – an unprecedented term of engagement, highlighting Deloitte’s positive impact on the sport system in Canada. The COC also announced today that human resources leader, Morneau Shepell, is partnering with the organization through 2020 as an official supporter and Founding Partner of the Game Plan program, providing a suite of mental health services to athletes. As a Premier National Partner of the COC, RBC will also be joining the program as a Founding Partner and lending their expertise in financial literacy to the athlete community.
The Game Plan program, which is supported by the Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC), Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Sport Institute Network (COPSI Network), has a goal to provide Canadian athletes with resources for life beyond sport. This new initiative which has been near three years in development, takes a proactive approach to total athlete wellness. It is designed to alleviate life’s common stressors and distractors, allowing athletes and coaches to focus on performing when it matters most.
The Game Plan program takes the very best information from all of its partners to cultivate an elite ecosystem of resources all in one place. Game Plan advisors will form part of the integrated support teams for athletes, working alongside sport scientists and performance experts. Game Plan Advisors are skilled in supporting athletes, drawing on their knowledge of high performance sport, career development, transition planning and goal-setting.
Both Olympic and Paralympic athletes and hopefuls will be encouraged to access the five distinct elements of the Game Plan program, which include: education, skill development, health, network, and career management. Each element is then made up of various pertinent modules – 33 initially, with others being added as the program evolves. Some examples of specific modules and resources that will be available to athletes include:
- Career Management – a job board featuring flexible work opportunities for athletes
- Network – a mentoring program set up between transitioning athletes and next generation hopefuls
- Education – specialized training opportunities and flexible class schedules at participating institutions
- Skill Development – conferences and webinars educating athletes on personal and corporate brand management, public speaking skills and financial planning
- Health – access to mental health support 24/7 and mental health awareness training
Ease of use and accessibility for athletes will be key to the program, with all resources being consolidated in a new website at www.mygameplan.ca. Specific resources will be delivered in multiple platforms at convenient times including through conferences, digital applications, one-on-one counselling, and group sessions.
Game Plan is now available for athletes, with modules for each element becoming more comprehensive as the program grows and develops.
For more information on Game Plan, please visit: www.mygameplan.ca.
“Game Plan is a game-changing program for our high performance athletes. Designed by leading experts from the ground up with athletes and for athletes, it delivers a program they have been in need of for years. It gives athletes the power to take control, build their own path to the podium on the field of play and plan their exit strategy off it. We are giving athletes the right tools they need to succeed at sport and in life.”
Christopher R. Overholt, CEO, Canadian Olympic Committee
“We are thrilled to expand our involvement with the COC through the development of Game Plan. Having worked closely with the sporting community to determine our athletes’ needs, we’ve developed an incredible program that will position athletes for continued success both within and outside of sport. Our renewed partnership with the COC through to 2032 will allow us to really make an impact on the future of sport in Canada and on the continued pursuit of Canadian excellence.”
Frank Vettese, Managing Partner and Chief Executive, Deloitte
“Morneau Shepell is excited to announce its designation as official mental health partner and official supporter of the Canadian Olympic Team, and founding partner of Game Plan. Our expertise in designing and providing mental wellness programs for a diverse set of organizations and their people makes this partnership both a natural and logical extension of our business activities. Game Plan as a total athlete wellness program provides an unprecedented combination of resources and support to elite athletes, encouraging their best performance both during and following their careers representing Canada on the world stage.”
Alan Torrie, President and CEO, Morneau Shepell
“The IOC is very happy to support the work of the COC in their holistic efforts to help their athletes both on and off the field of play. Athletes are at the heart of the Olympic Movement and remain the central focus to everything the IOC does. Initiatives like the Game Plan, IOC Athlete Career Programme and Athlete Learning Gateway provide invaluable assistance to athletes before, during and after their sporting careers to ensure they achieve lifelong excellence.”
Claudia Bokel, IOC Athletes’ Commission Chair and IOC Athlete Career Programme Steering Committee Chair
“This is an incredible and ground-breaking initiative by the COC and its partners that will dramatically change the landscape of sport in Canada for the better. This total athlete wellness program will ensure more seamless transitions, help our athletes compete longer and will motivate more Canadians to pursue their Olympic dreams knowing that this program will ultimately help to ensure both high performance athletic outcomes, and high performance careers after sport.”
Rosie MacLennan, two-time Olympian, London 2012 gold medallist
“Game Plan is an incredible undertaking and one that the COC and its partners should be so proud of. Canada is certainly breaking ground with this program, ensuring athletes are developed holistically while equipping them for life beyond sport with all the resources and support they could need.”
Jeff Christie, two-time Olympian, COC Athletes’ Commission Chair and Board of Directors Member
“On behalf of the Canadian Paralympic Committee, we are very pleased with the development of this world-class initiative that will help all of Canada’s high performance athletes achieve their full potential, both on and off the field of play. Working together as Team Canada, this exciting program will provide athletes and coaches with resources to enhance their pursuit of excellence at every stage of their athletic and personal lives, building role models and heroes to inspire all Canadians.”
Gaétan Tardif, President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee
“The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Sport Institute Network is proud to be a partner in the Game Plan program and to be the driving force in the delivery of the program to athletes across the country. Game Plan furthers the COPSI Network’s aim of delivering world-class sport science and sport medicine services to Olympic, Paralympic and high performance athletes by empowering them to plan for their career and life after competitive sport, ultimately reducing stress and distractions so they can focus on their current goals in order to perform to their maximum potential. This is an unprecedented program and truly showcases the power of the high performance sport system in Canada.”
Debbie Low, CEO and President of Canadian Sport Institute Ontario, on behalf of the COPSI Network
“I’m really looking forward to exploring the many innovative resources being offered with this program and I know many of my fellow athletes will feel the same. As athletes representing Canada, we leave no stone unturned in our quest for the podium, and we apply equal passion to the rest of our life in pursuit of personal and professional excellence. Thank you to all partners involved in this project for their dedication to athlete wellness.”
Benoit Huot, four-time Paralympic swimmer, 19-time Paralympic medallist
About the Canadian Olympic Committee:
The Canadian Olympic Committee leads the achievement of the Canadian Olympic Team’s podium success and advances Olympic values in Canada. Independent and predominantly privately funded, the Canadian Olympic Committee delivers resources that Canada’s elite athletes need to perform at their best and give their everything every day. The backbone of Canada’s Olympic movement, the Canadian Olympic Committee works with National Sport Federations to prepare the Team for the Olympic, Youth Olympic and Pan American Games. By sharing our athletes’ stories, we inspire all Canadians through the power of sport: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
About the Canadian Paralympic Committee:
The Canadian Paralympic Committee is a non-profit, private organization with 25 member sports organizations dedicated to strengthening the Paralympic Movement. The Canadian Paralympic Committee’s vision is to be the world’s leading Paralympic nation. Its mission is to lead the development of a sustainable Paralympic sport system in Canada to enable athletes to reach the podium at the Paralympic Games. By supporting Canadian high performance athletes with a disability and promoting their success, the Canadian Paralympic Committee inspires all Canadians with a disability to get involved in sport through programs delivered by its member organizations.
About the Canadian Olympic & Paralympic Sport Institute Network:
The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Sport Institute Network (COPSI Network) is a partnership between the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee, and the Canadian Sport Institute Network which is made up of seven Sport Institutes and Centres across Canada. The aim of this partnership is to strengthen and align Canada’s high performance sport system through a shared vision, areas of collaboration and new funding opportunities. The COPSI Network supports Canada’s world-leading Olympic and Paralympic podium performances by providing world-class, multi-sport daily training environments to high performance athletes, coaches, and sport organizations through expert leadership, programs, and sport science and sport medicine services.
Deloitte, one of Canada’s leading professional services firms, provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services. Deloitte LLP, an Ontario limited liability partnership, is the Canadian member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.
Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see www.deloitte.com/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms.
About Morneau Shepell Inc.:
Morneau Shepell is the only human resources consulting and technology company that takes an integrative approach to employee assistance, health, benefits and retirement needs. The Company is the leading provider of employee and family assistance programs, the largest administrator of retirement and benefits plans and the largest provider of integrated absence management solutions in Canada. Through health and productivity, administrative, and retirement solutions, Morneau Shepell helps clients reduce costs, increase employee productivity and improve their competitive position. Established in 1966, Morneau Shepell serves approximately 20,000 clients, ranging from small businesses to some of the largest corporations and associations in North America. With almost 4,000 employees in offices across North America, Morneau Shepell provides services to organizations across Canada, in the United States, and around the globe. Morneau Shepell is a publicly-traded company on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: MSI). For more information, visit morneaushepell.com.