The best youth First Nations athletes in the province will be coming to Regina next summer.
The File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council announced Regina will be the host city of the 2017 Saskatchewan First Nations Summer Games.
The games will see over around 5,000 athletes, coaches, chaperones and officials make their way to the Queen City for the event that runs from Aug. 6–11, 2017.
Youth athletes – 13 to 18 years of age – will take part in a variety of competitions including archery, canoeing and softball.
“Anytime you can be involved in sport and culture in our city, it’s well worth it,” Regina Mayor Michael Fougere. Fougere also spoke about the success of the 2014 North American Indigenous Games in the city.
With the recent string of suicides in northern indigenous communities, Tribal Vice-chief and Games Chair Elaine Chicoose said these games will have even more importance.
“We can feel what’s going on in the north,” Chicoose said. She also said is hopeful the games will “help them in any way possible” and will bring back culture and sport.
“Empower our youth and help them be proud of who they are.”
Chicoose said they are hopeful they will be able to use new Mosaic Stadium for the opening ceremonies but nothing has been set in stone.
Extensive preparations have already begun for the games and provincial organizations, individuals and First Nations people are showing their support for the event.
More volunteers and sponsors for the event are being searched for.