WOOSTER – Broomball, similar to ice hockey, roller hockey and floorball, is played on a hockey rink inside or outside by hitting a small ball around the ice using a stick called a “broom” with a triangular head. Players wear shoes instead of skates.
On April 29 at Alice Noble Ice Arena, it was played with a couple of different purposes — recreation and collaboration.
It was designed as entertainment to bring together families of employees and foster parents associated with The Village Network, Wayne County Children Services and the Wayne County Juvenile Court.
“The Village Network wanted to host an event that would continue building upon the relationship with (Children Services) and the Juvenile Court to continue that collaborative relationship,” said Scott B. Smales, Boys’ Village regional director.
“We work with them almost on a daily basis,” he said, and wanted to come up with a “wholesome community event” that could be enjoyed by all.
Along with triple-sized boxes of pizza, cookies and chips, give-aways were also part of the day’s event.
It was the first event of its kind, said Tim Homan, who added, “Children Services and Juvenile Court refer clients to us. We all are working toward the same goals to help young people in crisis.”
“We were invited as a collaborative partner,” said Deanna Nichols-Stika, the executive director of Wayne County Children Services, describing cooperation in Wayne County as “unlike your typical collaboration. It’s what makes Wayne County a special place in my opinion.”
Not only was it about being included in a just-for-fun event, according to Nichols-Stika, it also meant that TVN “thought about the needs of our families and understands what we do.”
The agencies often serve the same families, she said, another reason the partnership is valuable and means so much.
“I really hope this is the first of many integrated events,” said Smales.
“I was very excited to get this event organized to build a relationship between The Village Network, the Juvenile Court and Children Services,” said TVN CEO Rich Graziano.
Although it’s just getting off the ground, “I am hoping to expand the event moving forward to other partner agencies to promote teamwork among Wayne County mental health providers,” he said, adding, “This was a great way to spend quality time with family and friends. It was especially nice to see some former youth show up for the event.”
Written by: Linda Hall, Staff Writer, The Daily Record. Linda can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.