It’s all about giving back.
Hitmen forward Riley Fiddler-Schultz has done incredible work off ice in the community with two initiatives that the 17-year-old created with the help of his family in Fidds Friends and Fiddler-Schultz Fills A Ford.
He takes pride in his game and equal amount of pride in his programs.
“I’ve always been very fortunate in my situation to have food on the table, parents that have sustainable jobs and being able to get this far in my hockey career,” he said. “I just want to help others out in any way and I love every minute of it.
“My mom has always been a big contributor in the community and at a young age she got me into helping others out, being that person of taking the initiative to make a change.”
Through Fidds Friends, parents or registered chaperones with the Boys & Girls Club of Calgary attend Sunday Funday games receiving tickets and concession vouchers. Following the contest, Fiddler-Schultz then goes to their section to meet with the kids for autographs and pictures.
“My mom and I were talking one night and thinking of ways to give back and immediately I thought about the Boys and Girls Club,” he said. “They do so much to help kids build their confidence and give them opportunities to take part in various events.
“It wasn’t too long ago that I was looking up to guys in my situation and now to be on the flip side of that is surreal. When I see the smiles on their faces and how excited they get to see me, it means the world. Having little conversations and getting to know them better in what they like to do, that can make a big difference in their lives.
“I love kids and any chance I get to work with them, it’s a real honour.”
With Fiddler-Schultz Fills A Ford, the sophomore forward and teammate Luke Prokop parked out at a Calgary Co-op location on Nov. 10, collecting non-perishable food items and cash donations which saw all proceeds going to the Veterans Food Bank of Calgary.
Once the day was complete, the duo collected $955 in cash, $1000 in gift cards and a full truck of food items.
“We did that event a couple of years ago in my hometown of Fort Saskatchewan and tied it into Christmas with helping those less fortunate,” he explained. “This year with the schedule we couldn’t do it around Christmas but we tied it in nicely with the Veterans Food Bank and holding it the day before Remembrance Day. They were in a dire state for donations and the amount of people that came out to donate was incredible.”
It’s no surprise to see the young forward have such a drive for community work considering how involved his family has been in the past especially his uncle Vernon Fiddler.
“Growing up watching him play in the NHL and being around NHL players I got to see first-hand how much pride some guys took in taking the time to be involved in the community,” Fiddler-Schultz said.
“I’m excited to see where I can continue to help and hope that these little things go a long way.”