Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario Celebrates Team Ontario’s Remarkable Performance at the 2023 North American Indigenous Games
Mississauga, August 9, 2023 – Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario (ISWO) is thrilled to celebrate the exceptional achievements of Team Ontario at the recently concluded 2023 North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) held in Kjipuktuk (Halifax), Nova Scotia. Team Ontario athletes demonstrated unparalleled determination, skill, and resilience while competing under challenging weather conditions, bringing home an impressive total of 127 medals, comprising 55 gold, 37 silver, and 35 bronze medals.
Despite enduring historic amounts of rainfall in the Halifax region, Team Ontario athletes showcased their unwavering spirit, tenacity, and commitment to excellence, making their participation in the games a remarkable and unforgettable experience. This commendable performance reflects the dedication and hard work put forth by the athletes and highlights the ongoing support provided by Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario in nurturing and empowering Indigenous athletes.
“Team Ontario’s athletes have consistently showcased the values of culture, teamwork, leadership, and sportsmanship, embodying the true spirit of the North American Indigenous Games and this NAIG was no exception!” emphatically stated Keir Johnston, Team Ontario’s Chef de Mission. “Each athlete, coach, manager, volunteer, and chaperone contributed to a successful world-class sporting event. We are extremely proud in recognizing and celebrating the remarkable achievements of all of Team Ontario. We placed third in the overall medal standings, and I am sure every athlete that participated in the games has taken home a sense of pride in their accomplishments, established many lifelong friendships, and made many unforgettable memories.”
The 2023 NAIG not only celebrated the athletic prowess of Indigenous athletes from across North America but also served as a platform for Team Ontario athletes to proudly showcase their rich cultural heritage. These games offered an incredible opportunity for participants to not only compete but to also connect with their roots, share their cultural traditions, and celebrate their identities as Indigenous peoples. The bonds of friendship formed during the event will undoubtedly foster lifelong connections and lasting memories for all involved.
These sentiments were echoed by ISWO President, Marc Laliberte, “Team Ontario performed remarkably at the NAIG in Halifax, building on the work of our staff and volunteers who committed countless hours to the selection, preparation, and logistical efforts for our amazing team. The NAIG is a life-changing experience for our youth, many of whom left their communities for the city for the first time. The NAIG showcased our youth and culture on a larger stage and provided a world of hope and new opportunity”. Laliberte further recalls a conversation he had with a NAIG volunteer who observed, “This event is so important, these youth knew they were valued, they know they are loved”.
ISWO extends heartfelt gratitude to the host Province of Nova Scotia and the host community of Kjipuktuk (Halifax) for their unwavering hospitality and resilience in the face of challenging circumstances, particularly in light of the flooding that occurred during the games. Our thoughts and well-wishes go out to the affected communities, and we stand in solidarity with them during their recovery efforts.
The success of Team Ontario at the 2023 NAIG would not have been possible without the invaluable support of the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport/Ministère du Tourisme, de la Culture et du Sport. Their commitment to promoting and nurturing Indigenous sports and culture has been instrumental in providing Indigenous athletes with the necessary resources and opportunities to excel on the national and international stage.
Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario remains steadfast in its mission to foster a vibrant and inclusive sporting community for Indigenous athletes, emphasizing holistic well-being and cultural pride. The achievements of Team Ontario at the 2023 NAIG serve as a testament to the transformative power of sports in the lives of Indigenous youth and communities.
For further information and media inquiries, please contact:
Manager of Marketing & Communications
Indigenous Sport & Wellness Ontario
About Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario (ISWO):
Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario (ISWO) is a province-wide, Indigenous-led not-for-profit organization that advances the well-being of Indigenous peoples by providing quality sport and wellness opportunities. Through collaboration and partnerships, ISWO supports the holistic development of Indigenous athletes and promotes the values of leadership, respect, and unity.
Follow Indigenous Sport & Wellness Ontario: