Billet Coordinator – Kim Comfort Groves
Each season the Gillette Wild recruits talented young hockey players, ages 16-20, from all across the country and even some from outside of the US. Most of these players will be living away from home for the first time in their lives. To assist these players in pursuing their dreams of playing a higher level of hockey, the Gillette Wild needs billet families.
A billet family, or host family, is where a player lives during the hockey season. This is a player’s home away from home. Being a supportive billet family is immensely important for a junior player to help develop their confidence both on and off the ice. These players have proven to be great role models for younger children within the billet family as well. The bonds formed between a player and their billet family, and often the player’s family, have proven to be very rewarding. These relationships often carry on for many years after the player has left the team.
Each billet family will receive a monthly stipend to help offset the expenses of housing a player, as well as tickets to all home games. Policies and rules are also in place to help make the experience a rewarding one for both the families and the players. Your willingness to share your home and family is all it takes. You will truly make a difference in a young player’s life. Below you will find statements from current billet families sharing their experiences.
If you are interested in becoming a billet family or maybe considering it and would like more information, please contact our billet coordinator.
Billet Coordinator – Kim Groves
This is our first year billeting and we jumped right in taking 2 players. We have not only opened our hearts and our homes to these 2 incredible young men, but we have had our lives blessed immensely. Both of these young men have become big brothers to our 3 children, a mentor to our 12-year-old hockey player, and sons to my husband and I. The player’s families have also become extended parts of our family. In the short time that they’ve lived with us, they have truly become a part of our family and we wouldn’t trade one second of it. I highly encourage anyone who wants to grow their family or just bless a young person’s life, to seriously consider housing a player.
The Groves Family
I was amazed at how quickly the billet boys and our boys fell into just acting like brothers. That was the moment when I thought really, they fit right in. We feel like they really are part of our family at this point. Our boys have two older brothers now and when we all sit down to dinner, it’s just like having two more kids to ask how their day was and what’s going on in their world. Our experience with billeting over the last two years has really been an extension of our family. We are grateful that our billet kids came into our lives and I would encourage anyone else who has space in their homes and their family, to house a player for a year, give it a try.
The Marty Family