Help Hockey Kids from Ukraine

My name is Jari Byrski and I'm the owner of the SK8ON hockey school in Canada that has been working with minor hockey players, professional NHL, AHL and junior players as well as NHL, AHL and junior teams (Tampa Bay Lightning, Ottawa Senators, Oshawa Generals, and others) for over 30 years. 

My Polish-Ukrainian roots are driving everything I do from my themed blue and yellow business colours to practical support and involvement in Polish and Ukrainian youth hockey program development. 

On February 24, 2022, the world has changed for Ukraine and its people and it has touched me on a very personal level as my family and friends have been affected by this unspeakable and indescribable tragedy. 

Among millions of refugees, many talented young athletes have been impacted by this unjustified russian aggression. Before the war started a number of Ukrainian hockey teams from all over the country (Kharkiv, Odesa, Kramatorsk and other parts of Ukraine) have been participating in the tournament in Poland. In light of russian aggression, the players and coaching staff were unable to return home and thus are currently being stationed in the Polish city of Sanok,

For the past month, Poland's Hockey Development Foundation (Fundacja Rozwoju Hokeja) has been taking care of the players, coaches  and their families, but their resources are limited and they need help. With My Polish - Ukrainian heritage I have decided to help out with more permanent accommodation, access to ice, hockey equipment and other means to ensure they can continue to stay in Sanok.

Poland's Hockey Development Foundation (Fundacja Rozwoju Hokeja - is now hosting 67 child hockey players as well as their siblings and mothers (138 people total) in temporary accommodations in Sanok, Poland.

Poland's Hockey Development Foundation needs help to fund short-term accommodation options in Poland, as well as food, medicine, and other primary needs for athletes - as well as their equipment to ensure that they can continue to play the sport even during those times. We are also looking to help move some or all families to Canada to help reduce the immense burden placed on Polish communities and ensure that kids have the best shots in life despite these life-changing events.

Link to the local news agency highlighting the story -

Current costs include:
Accommodation, food, medicine, access to ice and hockey equipment - $30 CAD (per person per day)

$30 CAD x 138 people x 30 days = $124,200/month

We are looking for 2 month of accommodation for now that brings up our donation target to $124,200 x 2 = $248,400

100% of the funds received will be transferred to Poland's Hockey Development Foundation/Fundacja Rozwoju Hokeja.

The following Canadian partners are involved in this initiative:
 - Jari Byrski (project lead) - the owner of SK8ON hockey school
 - Mark Vytvytskyy (project co-lead) - partner at Reps AAA GTHL hockey academy
Poland's Hockey Development Foundation/Fundacja Rozwoju Hokeja  will receive 100% of the funds

Reps Hockey Academy - will spread the word within the youth hockey community and will support the allocation of kids within families and hockey organizations in Canada. Reps Hockey AAA club in Toronto has a long-standing history of developing young athletes and can help with connecting the dots for the young Ukrainian athletes if they decide to continue their development journey in Canada.
SK8ON Hockey School - funding and outreach partner

Donations (61)

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  • Ryan Neuhold
    • $100 
    • 6 mos
  • Mikhail Talapila
    • $100 
    • 9 mos
  • Mikhail Nesterenko
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Jennifer Luna
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
    • $200 
    • 1 yr
See all


Jari Byrski
Etobicoke, ON

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