Tonight, in partnership with the family of the late Vancouver sports writer Jason Botchford and various local media members, the Vancouver Canucks will host three aspiring young sports journalists as they kick off the second year of the Botchford Project initiative.
Jason Botchford passed away suddenly at the age of 48 back in April of 2019 after an accidental overdose of cocaine and fentanyl.
Botchford left behind three young children and his wife Kathryn, who is the person ultimately responsible for selecting the candidates for the Botchford Project initiative, keeping Jason’s legacy of helping aspiring young journalists alive and well.
The three chosen recipients — Lachlan Irvine, Clarissa Sabile, and Arash Memarzadeh — will attend morning skate at Rogers Arena this morning and return at night to watch the Canucks take on the Edmonton Oilers at 7 PM tonight.
“Despite a literal global pandemic and personal stress with nearing graduation, I found myself grounded through learning about sports media and recently cheering for the Canucks online,” said Clarissa Sabile, who also runs the social media accounts for the prestigious Canucks blog CanucksArmy.com. “I felt supported by writers and fellow fans alike, learning how to cover my favourite team in a colloquial, honest and educational style as Botch did. I am not only grateful to be selected as a recipient for the Botchford Project this year, but inspired and excited for what’s to come.”
Last year, recipients of the Botchford Project followed the same schedule, but with access to players and coaches being done entirely over Zoom due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus, the Botchford Project is going to look a little bit different this year.
After taking in morning skate and the game itself, the recipients will then write a story each that will be published on the Canucks’ main website.
This initiative is all about gaining experience, getting your foot in the door, and gaining advice from the top dogs in the Vancouver Canucks media scene, and it’s simply wonderful that COVID-19 didn’t bring the Botchford Project to a halt.