Government of Canada

Government of Canada

August 03, 2008 16:00 ET

The Government of Canada Welcomes Athletes to the 2008 Cowichan North American Indigenous Games

DUNCAN, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Aug. 3, 2008) - From August 3 to 10, 2008, British Columbia's Cowichan Valley will host the largest sporting and cultural gathering of Indigenous people in North America, thanks to an investment by the Government of Canada.

The Honourable Helena Guergis, Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport), today welcomed athletes and artists participating in the 2008 Cowichan North American Indigenous Games. More than 4 500 Aboriginal athletes and 3 000 cultural participants from across Canada and the United States will attend this seven-day event.

"On behalf of all Canadians, I would like to wish all participants the best of luck at the 2008 Cowichan North American Indigenous Games," said Secretary of State Guergis. "Competing in these games is a major achievement and demonstrates exceptional effort and dedication to sport excellence."

Canada supports the North American Indigenous Games because of the tremendous impact they have on Canada's Aboriginal communities and the legacies they leave for Aboriginal sport development. Sport Canada's Policy on Aboriginal Peoples' Participation in Sport supports and promotes the development of Aboriginal athletes and sport. Such sport events help build the next generation of Canada's Aboriginal athlete role models.

A contribution of up to $3.5 million will help stage the North American Indigenous Games. A one-time commitment of up to $1 million dollars has also been provided for provincial and territorial teams to travel to the Cowichan Valley.

The Government of Canada is the single largest contributor to sport in Canada and supports participation and excellence from the playground to the podium. When our commitment in Budget 2008 is fully implemented, our investment in Canadian sport will reach an all-time high of over $166 million annually, including $4.8 million a year to help finance sport policy initiatives to improve equity and provide Aboriginal people with increased access to sport.

For more information on the 2008 Cowichan North American Indigenous Games, please visit

This news release is available on the Internet at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and
    International Trade) (Sport)
    Philippe Mailhot
    Director of Communications
    Canadian Heritage
    Media Relations